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There There Review

There There


June 5, 2018

Fiction - Contemporary


Indian, American Indian, Native American, Indigenous Americans: A community living within the urban society built over the land they cherish. A collection of stories passed down through the generations, ensuring their history is not forgotten. A powwow to gather those from different tribes to celebrate each other and their traditions.

In Tommy Orange’s There There, the reader is taken on an expedition revealing a web of connection. Engaged through the inner workings of twelve-character views to uncover the insight that we are all interrelated. Tommy’s writing brings the phrase “a small world” in to a new light, illuminating parallels in us all.

Although an intriguing storyline, the numerous character views was difficult to follow. A constant addition of characters along with an ever-changing timeline was confusing. In addition, the reader is left with unanswered questions due to the abrupt ending. Plus, with an abundance of profanity, a rating of 3 out of 5 stars is awarded.

Furthermore, numerous triggers from genocide, rape, suicide, drug use, alcoholism, birth defects, mass shootings, physical abuse, and racism are mentioned. Please take caution if any of these may elicit a negative reaction.

Recommended for anyone interested in learning more about Native Americans and how they have adapted. Overall, a difficult read; but an interesting glimpse into the Urban Indian community around today.


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