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This town sleeps : a novel

by Staples, Dennis E.,

Format: Print Book 2020
Availability: Available at 8 Libraries 8 of 11 copies
Available (8)
Location Collection Call #
CLP - East Liberty LGBTQ FICTION Staples
Location  CLP - East Liberty
Collection  LGBTQ
Call Number  FICTION Staples
CLP - Homewood Fiction Collection FICTION Staples
Location  CLP - Homewood
Collection  Fiction Collection
Call Number  FICTION Staples
CLP - Sheraden Fiction Collection FICTION Staples
Location  CLP - Sheraden
Collection  Fiction Collection
Call Number  FICTION Staples
CLP - Squirrel Hill Fiction Collection FICTION Staples
Location  CLP - Squirrel Hill
Collection  Fiction Collection
Call Number  FICTION Staples
Cooper-Siegel Community Library New Books FIC STA
Location  Cooper-Siegel Community Library
Collection  New Books
Call Number  FIC STA
Monroeville Public Library New Books STAPLES DENNIS
Location  Monroeville Public Library
Collection  New Books
South Park Library New Books F STAPLES
Location  South Park Library
Collection  New Books
Call Number  F STAPLES
Whitehall Public Library Fiction Collection FIC Staples
Location  Whitehall Public Library
Collection  Fiction Collection
Call Number  FIC Staples
Unavailable (3)
Location Collection Status
CLP - Allegheny Regional Fiction CHECKED OUT
Location  CLP - Allegheny Regional
Collection  Fiction
CLP - Main Library First Floor - LGBTQ MISSING
Location  CLP - Main Library
Collection  First Floor - LGBTQ
Mt. Lebanon Public Library New Books CHECKED OUT
Location  Mt. Lebanon Public Library
Collection  New Books

"Elegant and gritty, angry and funny. Staples's work is emotional without being sentimental. Dennis unmakes something in us, then remakes it, a quilt of characters that embody this town, this place, which sleeps but doesn't dream, or it is all a dream we want to wake up from with its characters." --Tommy Orange, author of There, There

On an Ojibwe reservation called Languille Lake, within the small town of Geshig at the hub of the rez, two men enter into a secret romance. Marion Lafournier, a midtwenties gay Ojibwe man, begins a relationship with his former classmate Shannon, a heavily closeted white man. While Marion is far more open about his sexuality, neither is immune to the realities of the lives of gay men in small towns and closed societies.

Then one night, while roaming the dark streets of Geshig, Marion unknowingly brings to life the spirit of a dog from beneath the elementary school playground. The mysterious revenant leads him to the grave of Kayden Kelliher, an Ojibwe basketball star who was murdered at the age of seventeen and whose presence still lingers in the memories of the townsfolk. While investigating the fallen hero's death, Marion discovers family connections and an old Ojibwe legend that may be the secret to unraveling the mystery he has found himself in.

Set on a reservation in far northern Minnesota, This Town Sleeps explores the many ways history, culture, landscape, and lineage shape our lives, our understanding of the world we inhabit, and the stories we tell ourselves to make sense of it all.

Published Reviews
Booklist Review: "On a reservation in a small northern Minnesota town, an Ojibwe man named Marion Lafournier begins a sexual relationship with a deeply closeted white man named Shannon Harstad, who insists he is straight. An element of magic realism enters the narrative when Marion encounters a ghost dog who leads him to the grave of a 17-year-old who had been murdered a decade earlier. This launches a series of flashbacks featuring women who had been involved with the murdered boy in the past. Returning to the present and another magic twist, Marion becomes engaged with the spirit of the murdered boy as his relationship with Shannon enters an emotional denouement. Staples' first novel is an arresting look at the intersection of past and present. Himself an Ojibwe, Staples writes with authority about his characters and setting. If his novel has a failing, it is that his female characters are often little more than names, leading to confusion in the flashbacks, but otherwise this is an auspicious debut with a memorable protagonist."
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review: "In this promising but slack debut, Staples depicts a Native American community with a haunted past and a bleak future. Marion Lafournier is a 26-year-old gay Ojibwe man, cynical and wry, who feels stuck in Geshig, a small reservation town in Minnesota that "crushes any form of ambition." He begins a clandestine affair with former prom king Shannon Harstad, who struggles to square his secret homosexuality with his conception of masculinity. While pursuing this fraught relationship, Marion encounters an otherworldly dog--a manidoo, or revenant--and follows him to the grave of Kayden Kelliher, a teenager murdered by another boy years earlier. Marion seeks to find out what the manidoo wants and why it has visited him in particular. A visit to a sweat lodge ceremony with a wonderfully rendered medicine man leads to the discovery that spirits are real, not a "stupid" superstition, and Kayden's ghost follows Marion through an investigation of his own family's history of violence and restless spirits. The novel's two strands, the desultory mystery and the romance, never fully gel, and neither generates quite enough suspense or emotional resonance. Staples, though, can be marvelously funny ("Good mothers don't give their sons marijuana. Great ones do"), and there are evocative tableaus of life in Geshig. This offers tantalizing glimpses of talent with a steady hand on mystical material. (Mar.)"
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Additional Information
Subjects Gay men -- Fiction.
Ojibwa Indians -- Minnesota -- Fiction.
Murder -- Investigation -- Fiction.
Legends -- Fiction.
Minnesota -- Fiction.
Detective and mystery fiction.
Gay fiction.
Psychological fiction.
Publisher Berkeley, California :2020
Language English
Description 211 pages ; 22 cm
ISBN 9781640092846
Other Classic View