Book Project

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian

Sherman Alexie

Sherman Alexie is a Native American who was born and raised in Spokane Washington's Indian Reservation. A poet, writer, and film maker, Sherman has developed multiple books and short stories, some of his best include The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven. He has been writing since the 1990's and continues his works today. His books mostly include anything that has to do with previous experience that he connects with. Alcoholism, poverty, and harsh struggles are key concepts in his writing.

Main Characters

Junior, the main character in the autobiography is a boy with extreme ambitions for coming from his situation. Being poor and having a brain disease, Junior is constantly worrying for himself and others. He is different from every other kid on the "Rez" simply because he cares for his grades and school. His brave personality is greatly shown throughout the book, and the complications he goes through to become the person he wants to be.

Rowdy, Juniors best friend, is a giant. He is a stereotypical giant too, he's mean, not very bright, and is constantly getting into trouble with his anger issues. His life is hard, and it only creates his personality, which is frightening to most kids except his long time friend Junior.

Penelope, Juniors "semi-girlfriend" is the girl of his dreams. She is a girl who lives over at Reardan and is a huge influence on Juniors life. Nice, pretty,and appreciating, Penelope is comforting to the book in the essence that she protects Junior from the horrors of high school.

Gordy, a so called "genius" is one of the first people at Reardan that inspires Junior. He is extremely intelligent and teaches some tricks to Junior about high school and academics. Gordy and Junior become close friends becuase of their interests in books and reading.


Poverty and discrimination drive this compelling book. Being on the reserve, Junior and his family are poor and have little money to eat and grow, the fact that Junior has a brain disease doesn't help either. Since Junior is an intelligent kid, his motive to one day get out of the "Rez" and be somebody he knows he is capable of becoming leads him to do something that is unheard of. His decision ultimatley drives the kids on the reserve to despise him. Even his best friend becomes his worst enemy. Junior has to overcome hardship, discrimination, and violence to one day become the person he strives to be. This book is a story of his travles and the effort of being a nomadic-indian.

Book Passage

" It's one of the simplest sentences in the worl, just four words, but they're the four hugest words in the world when they're put together.

You can do it"( Alexie, 189). This passage simply demonstrates the importance of support. Junior always being doubted for who he is, never truly gets support, but this passage changes everything for him. The thought of over coming doubt drives Junior in this book.

Plot Teaser

Though Junior is a member of the Indian society in Spokane Washington, he strives to one day get off the reservation and make something of himself. His chance comes through his academic capabilities. Since he wants to get a better education, his brave attitude leads him to a decsion that contradicts any Indians view on the attitudes toward the "white society".

What readers would like this book?

The kind of reader who would enjoy this book would be young adults and adults with a strong vision on discrimination. The book allows readers the chance to feel for Junior and connect with all the stuggles he goes through. The young adults will enjoy this book due to the humorous moments and the instant changes from humor to complete seriousness. Teenagers would enjoy the book because not only is it funny and joyful but it is insightful to the things privellaged kids such as the kids in Bend are isolated from, but it also has pictures, what more would a teen want. Overall, I believe anoyone who likes a good book with a true story that has humor, sorrow, and happiness would strongly enjoy this book.

I liked the book

I liked this book because of how well the author connected to me. I felt as though I went through the struggles Junior went through. His strong, envious tales never let me put down the compelling book.

Works Cited

Moore, Larry D. "Sherman Alexie." Wikipedia. Wikipedia, 11 May 2013. Web. 19 May
2013. <>.