Thereís a story in Ty Nolanís new book wherein the narrator asks the reader if they recall that sometimes the mountains are not as close as they appear. You set off on your quest and just as you think you are nearly there, you find they are still far away. So, your journey continues. New discoveries can be made and thereís something new to discover before you get to the mountains.
In "Coyote Still Going: Native American Legends and Contemporary Stories," the readerís journey is much like this mountain-running adventure. At one moment, you think that Tyís book is an autobiography of a storyteller and artist. Itís time for storytelling! When you get close to that mountain, he switches it up and now you are reading a formal story from Native American culture. Next page, you see a new perspective and you are engaging with Ty in making a recipe of salmon or maybe even moose nose. Wait, then heís talking about culture clashes and making you think about language and "Weekends!"
Wow. This book is that type of journey. When you think you have figured out Mr. Nolanís work, it shifts. Itís funny, irreverent, touching and insightful while often being all of those in the same chapter. It has the feel of stream-of-thought writing but itís not self-indulgent. He drops a few big names here and there in the text but those moments give you a feeling that the author is drawing from a deep and varied well of experience.
If you are looking solely for a book of Native American stories, this book is not that type of collection, even if there are many stories in the book that might fit that description. Weíre having problems classifying this book, but we know that this is one that will have a permanent place on our Kindle. Itís rare to find a book that at one moment makes you laugh aloud and in the next gives you pause for wonder with a fine world-story. It feels very much like you are sharing time with a sophisticated friend.
At the time of the writing of this review in late 2013, the book is available in the Kindle format, but, of course, you donít have to own a Kindle device to read the book. Thereís a free reader for nearly any device you are using.
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