Brothers on Three: A True Story of Family, Resistance, and Hope on a Reservation in Montana

Abe Streep. Celadon, $28.99 (336p) ISBN 978-1-250-21068-5
Journalist Streep debuts with an earnest account of a Montana high school basketball team’s quest to repeat as state champions in 2018. Most players on the Arlee Warriors had familial ties to the Salish and Kootenai tribes of the Flathead Indian Reservation, and Streep documents growing excitement in the community during the team’s march to victory in the 2017 “Class C” final. He also details a star player’s work with a literacy coach to keep up his grades, and an administrator’s concerns that the competitive pressure might spike suicide rates, which were already high among Native American boys. During the 2017–2018 season, the stakes were raised, especially for the team’s seniors, many of whom sought a college education with the goal of returning to make Arlee better. Streep documents injuries and illnesses that nearly derailed the season, and describes how the players and their coach launched a suicide prevention initiative. After winning a second state championship, some Warriors left Arlee to play college ball. Streep is in top form with the on-court action and insights into the discrimination faced by Native athletes, though he somewhat shortchanges the tribal history. Still, this is a rousing portrait of a long-shot team beating the odds. Illus. (Sept.)
Reviewed on : 06/03/2021
Release date: 09/07/2021
Genre: Nonfiction
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