SOME PEOPLE ARE INDIANS by George A. Boyce

SOME PEOPLE ARE INDIANS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A man hopes to appease competing missionaries by dividing his future children among their respective churches; a young girl struggles to make ""a good name"" in the English language school even though her real name has been mixed up on the school records; a thrifty older wife outwits the Navaho judge Slow Talker. . . Again and again in these vignettes a Navaho character is thrown into the conflict with white culture or reveals some new aspect of Navaho life -- the squaw dance, the birth of a first child in the family hooghan, or the inevitable loss of a child to ""Arrows-in-thechest sickness."" Though rather thin by the standards of fiction, each of the protagonists is sturdy enough in the context of Boyce's slice-of-life realism. There are moments of gentle humor and earthy wisdom to balance the pathos, and the background notes for each episode -- on Navaho names, marriage customs and legendary heroes -- are supported by the characters themselves, who seem as authentic as the Arizona countryside. Overly poignant, but better executed than say, La Pointe's The Sioux Today which presented the same sort of ""typical"" scenes but lacked the story-teller's perspective.

Pub Date: June 14th, 1974
Page count: 166pp
Publisher: Vanguard