Green Grass, Running Water
OverviewWhen 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.