You Don't Have to Say You Love Me: A Memoir - Sherman Alexie

Staff Pick

“How does one deliver an honest eulogy?” Sherman Alexie asks.  And “how does one commemorate/ the ordinary?” The answer is to remember, confess, pray, rant, and ask more questions. Alexie does all these and more in You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me (Little, Brown, $28) his powerful, poignant memoir of his mother, a woman so complex she’s “an entire tribe of contradictions.” Did she love him? Did he love her? He answers yes, but worries the questions through stories by turns angry, funny, and raw, and through a dazzling range of poems that include everything from ballads to rhymed couplets to a tour de force sequence of 52 haiku, each as perfect as the squares in the quilts his mother sewed to support the family. While his father steadily drank himself to death, Alexie’s mother was a recovering alcoholic who kept her family alive, if often hungry, in an unfinished HUD house on the Spokane Indian Reservation. She was honored by her tribe for her strength and generosity, yet she was often cruel to her children. With this jarring inconsistency at the heart of his brave, compassionate, book, Alexie traces a lineage of violence so powerful it can cause victims to become perpetrators.

You Don't Have to Say You Love Me: A Memoir By Sherman Alexie Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316270755
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Little, Brown and Company - June 13th, 2017