The 11th annual “Everybody Reads” community reading project is underway.

This year’s project features the work of author Sherman Alexie. Multnomah County Library has selected two of his books to highlight: “The Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian”, for young adults, and “Ten Little Indians” – a collection of short stories – for adult readers.

“The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian”, a 2007 National Book Award winner in Young People’s Literature, is based on Alexie’s own experiences. The book chronicles the adolescence of “Junior”, a budding cartoonist growing up on the Spokane Indian Reservation, just as Alexie did. Trying to rise above the reservation life everyone expects him to live, Junior leaves his troubled school to attend an all-white farm town high school, where the only other Indian is the school mascot. Alexie’s acclaimed and bestselling collection of short stories, “Ten Little Indians,” includes nine poignant and emotionally resonant stories about Native Americans who find themselves at a personal and cultural crossroads. His tales of contemporary American Indian life are laced with razor-sharp humor, unsettling candor, and biting wit. A college professor recognized Alexie’s “intensity of language, passion, and energy”, and his first novel, “Reservation Blues”, won Booklist’s Editors Choice Award for Fiction. His second, “Indian Killer”, was a New York Times Notable Book. “The Toughest Indian in the World” won the 2001 PEN/Malamud Award, honoring excellence in the art of storytelling. Ten Little Indians was a national bestseller and Publishers Weekly Book of the Year.

Alexie’s recent books include the novel “Flight”; and “Face”, a collection of poems. His 2009 book of short stories, “War Dances”, won the PEN Faulkner Award.

Extra copies of these books are available (while supplies last) at neighborhood libraries, thanks to the generous support of The Library Foundation. Readers are encouraged to share these extra copies with friends, coworkers and neighbors.

Please join us at Multnomah County Library’s Book Discussion Groups:

· Sellwood-Moreland Library Pageturners , Tuesday, February 19, 6:30 pm

· Woodstock Library Pageturners, Wednesday, February 20, 6:30 pm

Sherman Alexie himself will climax the citywide Everybody Reads this year by speaking at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall on Tuesday, March 12, 7:30 pm. His appearance is made possible by Literary Arts; tickets and event information are online at:

And visit online  to find all Everybody Reads discussions and events, learn which stores are offering a discount on the books, and more.

Programming support also made possible in part by Oregon Public Broadcasting, the Portland Tribune and Community Newspapers Inc., and by Portland State University. This project is supported in part by a grant from the Oregon Cultural Trust: Oregonians sustaining, developing and participating in our arts, heritage, and humanities.

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