There There

There There

Fierce, angry, funny, heartbreaking—Tommy Orange’s first novel is a wondrous and shattering portrait of an America few of us have ever seen, and it introduces a brilliant new author at the start of a major career.

There There is a relentlessly paced multigenerational story about violence and recovery, memory and identity, and the beauty and despair woven into the history of a nation and its people. It tells the story of twelve characters, each of whom have private reasons for traveling to the Big Oakland Powwow. Jacquie Red Feather is newly sober and trying to make it back to the family she left behind in shame. Dene Oxendene is pulling his life back together after his uncle’s death and has come to work at the powwow to honor his uncle’s memory. Opal Viola Victoria Bear Shield has come to watch her nephew Orvil, who has taught himself traditional Indian dance through YouTube videos and has come to the powwow to dance in public for the very first time. There will be glorious communion, and a spectacle of sacred tradition and pageantry. And there will be sacrifice, and heroism, and unspeakable loss.

Here is a voice we have never heard—a voice full of poetry and rage, exploding onto the page with stunning urgency and force. Tommy Orange writes of the urban Native American, the Native American in the city, in a stunning novel that grapples with a complex and painful history, with an inheritance of beauty and profound spirituality, and with a plague of addiction, abuse, and suicide. An unforgettable debut, destined to become required reading in schools and universities across the country.

Title:There There
Edition Language:English
ISBN:9780525520375
Format Type:

About Tommy Orange

Tommy Orange is a recent graduate from the MFA program at the Institute of American Indian Arts. He is a 2014 MacDowell Fellow, and a 2016 Writing by Writers Fellow. He is an enrolled member of the Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes of Oklahoma. He was born and raised in Oakland, California, and currently lives in Angels Camp, California.


    There There Reviews

  • Emily May

    "Don't ever let anyone tell you what being Indian means. Too many of us died to get just a little bit of us here, right now, right in this kitchen." Orange's ambitious debut captures the experience o...

  • Roxane

    This is an ambitious novel told in stories about different Indians in Oakland whose lives converge at a Pow Wow. It took me a long time to get into the novel. When the threads start to come together t...

  • Elyse Walters

    Update: Terrific pick!!!! 2018 National Book Award Longlist.... Fiction!!5+++++ stars!!!!! Absolutely phenomenal!!!!!“There There” is a non-stop pace story... COULD NOT PUT THIS DOWN....The storie...

  • Rick Riordan

    Tommy Orange's debut novel is already getting a lot of love, but I have to chime in with my praise, too. For one thing, There, There is set in Oakland, where I lived for most of the 90s, and reading i...

  • Matthew Quann

    Tommy Orange’s There There is, hands down, my favourite novel of the year thus far.*If you came here looking for a scale-tipping review, look no further. In fact, imagine me clearing off any weight ...

  • Angela M

    Before I even finished reading this, I began hoping that Tommy Orange was already working on his next book. Beautifully written, creatively and skillfully structured with the stories of multiple chara...

  • Rose (Traveling Sister)

    How could I give this poetic tapestry of cultural politics any fewer than 5 stars?"She told me the world was made of stories, nothing else, just stories, and stories about stories."That's exactly what...

  • Diane S ?

    Dene Oxedene, putting his life back together after his uncle's death, wins a grant, allowing him to video stories from those attending the Oakland Pow Wow. In alternating voices we follow the lives an...

  • Michael

    A collection of interrelated stories set in Oakland, California, There There charts the inner lives of twelve Native Americans as they prepare for the impending Big Oakland Powwow. Orange hops from pe...

  • Hannah

    This debut is absolutely 100% incredible. Marlon James called it a thunderclap and I have to agree. This might be my favourite read of the year so far. And as is often the case when I adore a book thi...