Green Grass, Running Water

Green Grass, Running Water

Book - 1993
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Baker & Taylor
A great human drama is played out from a Blackfoot reservation to Hollywood while the mythical trickster, Coyote, watches from the sidelines, playfully manipulating events

Blackwell North Amer
When Medicine River was published in 1990, the New York Times said of Thomas King, "He knows his territory. His first novel is economical, precise, and elegant." Now King returns with his totally fresh voice - carefully controlled, yet without artifice - to present a complex web of character, myth, folklore, and contemporary and universal experience.
Green Grass, Running Water is the story of five Blackfoot Indians in the town of Blossom and its nearby reserve, whose very different lives nevertheless continually cross. Alberta, a university professor who wants a child but not a marriage, is involved with two men who seem to represent opposite possibilities: Charlie, a flashy lawyer, and Lionel, a self-effacing TV salesman. Latisha, Lionel's sister, runs the Dead Dog Cafe, a local hangout and tourist trap. And then there's Eli, who moved to the city and its white man's establishment, never intending to look back to Blossom or the reservation's ancient way of life.
All the while, four old Indians, escapees from a mental institution, drift mysteriously and hilariously in and out of time, from the beginnings of the universe to its undecided future. Wildly combining Native American and Western spiritual traditions in the stories they tell, they attempt to recreate and reorder the world. And the trickster Coyote follows along, wreaking havoc as he prowls through the novel.
This is a rich tale, weaving subtle, magical humor, revisionist history, muted nostalgia, and sacred humanity into one bright, whole cloth.

& Taylor

A great human drama is played out from a Blackfoot reservation to Hollywood while the mythical trickster, Coyote, watches from the sidelines, playfully manipulating events. By the author of Medicine River. 12,500 first printing. Tour.

Publisher: Boston : Houghton Mifflin, 1993.
ISBN: 9780395623046
Branch Call Number: KIN
Characteristics: 360 p. ; 24 cm.


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Dec 28, 2017

It was interesting to see where the CBC Radio show ¨Dead Dog Cafe¨ came from. However I found the radio program much funnier than the book. With its limited vocabulary, the book felt more like a children´s story.

SCL_Justin Aug 22, 2017

Green Grass, Running Water is really good. It’s very fragmented and I needed to get into the proper headspace to bounce around between all the different characters (and mythological versions of the story no one will let Coyote tell), but once I found that rhythm I really really liked it.

There’s a dam on an Alberta reserve that is being kept nonfunctional by a dude living in his mother’s cabin (and a court injunction). There’s a not-quite-love triangle between a woman named Alberta and a pair of cousins, neither of whom she wants to marry. The Lone Ranger, Ishmael, Robinson Crusoe and Hawkeye (not the Matt Fraction-written version) are on the run from an asylum trying to fix the world.

Yeah. I really really liked it, and especially recommend it as being similar to and probably better than Tom Robbins' books.

Apr 09, 2015

A serious topic written with much humour and some sarcasm. Great dialogue and unusual narration and but I occasionally felt its unusually disjointed structure made it difficult to follow through its various story lines and characters.
King leaves us with a message and with many rhetorical questions. Are Natives excluded from the present cultural and political system? Does Western white society even know who Natives are or what they want? Are Natives doomed to continue on the same unsuccessful path that they have been on for a very long time? There are certainly no easy answers to these questions as King's more recent book, The Inconvenient Indian, clearly shows.
Overall a very enjoyable read.

Apr 01, 2015

There were so many parts to this book that I enjoyed and so many parts that left me confused.
In general the 'magical' parts of the story were the most difficult for me to understand. The characters in this storyline blended together and the tale they were telling kept returning to the beginning leaving me baffled for pretty much the entire book.
I did really enjoy the Dead Dog Cafe and Eli's fight over the hydro dam construction. I found both storylines very interesting.

There is so much about this book that I would have missed if I hadn't been reading it as part of a book club read. Many of the character names and Canadian history I didn't catch myself but had pointed out later.

Aug 15, 2014

Green Grass Running Water is a novel by Thomas King that connects both the spiritual and real world through real life problems. The book follows 4 major conflicts separately from chapter to chapter. Each one of these conflicts provides their own significant impact to the end of the novel. Conflicts King talks of spans from feminism, social injustice, stereotypes and native Indian struggles. Whether it’s a young man trying to find his way into a better situation in life or a young women deciding who is her true soul mate. Green Grass Running Water is also a great example of a book that can enhance critical thinking in readers. Throughout the book King uses multiple kinds of literary devices and effects to add to the story. These methods of enhancements I found not only made the book more enjoyable but made me think more as a reader. Thomas King, the author of Green Grass Running Water masterfully uses allusions specifically above all other literary devices to create immense depth to situations within the story. The key factor throughout the novel is the struggles native Indians have with the rest of society and King uses these same allusions to help express these conflicts’ significances. The title itself, “Green Grass Running Water” is an allusion of how all and within Canada that is accompanied by green grass and running water is truthfully property of native Indians. Even the title itself expresses social and civil issues native Indians have faced. King’s signature writing style of using small allusions and hints add a lot to a novel such as Green Grass Running Water. All in all, Green Grass Running Water helps its reading audience think and has the audience really connect with the words in the novel. In my opinion, it’s a great book for any reader looking for a challenge and loves a suspenseful ending.

Apr 26, 2011

View with laughter the human condition as imposed by the society at large and the internal needs of the individual. We share much in common when we stand alone. Many wish to be individuals and still enjoy recognition from others (the so call majority).

abird Apr 30, 2010

Q&Q Can Lit Canon pick (April 2010)

AD_Library Sep 27, 2009

Great Book!


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