The Almanac of the Dead by Leslie Marmon Silko
A Novel

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A tour de force examination of the historical conflict between Native and Anglo Americans by critically acclaimed author Leslie Marmon Silko, under the hot desert sun of the American Southwest.

In this virtuoso symphony of character and culture, Leslie Marmon Silko’s breathtaking novel interweaves ideas and lives, fate and history, passion and conquest in an attempt to re-create the moral history of the Americas as told from the point of view of the conquered, not the conquerors. Touching on issues as disparate as the borderlands drug wars, ecological devastation committed for the benefit of agriculture, and the omnipresence of talking heads on American daytime television, The Almanac of the Dead is fiction on the grand scale, a sweeping epic of displacement, intrigue, and violent redemption.

About Leslie Marmon Silko

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Leslie Marmon Silko was born in 1948 to a family whose ancestry includes Mexican, Laguna Indian, and European forebears. She has said that her writing has at its core "the attempt to identify what it is to be a half-breed or mixed-blood person." As she grew up on the Laguna Pueblo Reservation, she learned the stories and culture of the Laguna people from her great-grandmother and other female relatives. After receiving her B. A. in English at the University of New Mexico, she enrolled in the University of New Mexico law school but completed only three semesters before deciding that writing and storytelling, not law, were the means by which she could best promote justice. She married John Silko in 1970. Prior to the writing of Ceremony, she published a series of short stories, including "The Man to Send Rain Clouds." She also authored a volume of poetry, Laguna Woman: Poems, for which she received the Pushcart Prize for Poetry. In 1973, Silko moved to Ketchikan, Alaska, where she wrote Ceremony. Initially conceived as a comic story abut a mother's attempts to keep her son, a war veteran, away from alcohol, Ceremony gradually transformed into an intricate meditation on mental disturbance, despair, and the power of stories and traditional culture as the keys to self-awareness and, eventually, emotional healing. Having battled depression herself while composing her novel, Silko was later to call her book "a ceremony for staying sane." Silko has followed the critical success of Ceremony with a series of other novels, including Storyteller, Almanac for the Dead, and Gardens in the Dunes. Nevertheless, it was the singular achievement of Ceremony that first secured her a place among the first rank of Native American novelists. Leslie Marmon Silko now lives on a ranch near Tucson, Arizona.
Published April 30, 2013 by Simon & Schuster. 772 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, History, Political & Social Sciences, Science & Math, Travel. Fiction

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