Talking Leaves

Craig Lesley, Author Laurel Press $10 (385p) ISBN 978-0-440-50344-6
Lesley's ( Winterkill ) anthology of contemporary Native American short fiction is broad almost by definition. Many of the stories are by well-known authors (Louise Erdrich, Gerald Vizenor, N. Scott Momaday). Others, including some of the best, are by less-familiar writers. A wide variety of traditions--more than 30 tribes or bands--are represented. Themes range from ancient lore to the modern, pk often assimilated life-styles of Native Americans. what does that mean? Clifford Trafzer beautifully evokes the 19th-century Indian Wars and the slow-burning desire for revenge felt by their victims. Darryl Babe Wilson deals with the twin Indian themes of memory and respect for the land. Thomas King's hilarious piece satirizes movie portrayals of Native Americans by white actors, using as a structure the plot of the popular Field of Dreams. There is much humor in this collection. There is also much pain. Perhaps the finest story is Rayna Greene's impressionistic ``High Cotton,'' a slice-of-life tale a young woman talking to her grandmother at a relative's funeral. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/02/1991
Release date: 09/01/1991
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 416 pages - 978-0-385-31272-1
Prebound-Other - 385 pages - 978-0-606-00793-1
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