Books

Grove Press
Grove Press
Grove Press

Black Eagle Child

by Ray Young Bear

“The American Indian poet and novelist Ray A. Young Bear possesses a robust imagination and a wonderfully droll narrative voice.” –The New York Times

  • Imprint Grove Paperback
  • Page Count 288
  • Publication Date January 14, 1997
  • ISBN-13 978-0-8021-3428-8
  • Dimensions 6" x 9"
  • US List Price $15.95

About The Book

A classic of Native American literature, Black Eagle Child uses a rich mix of verse, prose narrative, and letters to tell Edgar Bearchild’s journey to adulthood. Although the backdrop of much of Young Bear’s novel may be familiar—the conflicts over race, drugs, Vietnam and others that gripped America in the fifties, sixties, and seventies—Bearchild’s recounts his coming-of-age story from a distinct vantage point, as a member of the Mesquakie nation. From his childhood delight in Jell-O to his induction into the faith of his elders, Bearchild’s journey is a uniquely American one.

Seamlessly mixing tribal memory and the comic events of Bearchild’s life, Young Bear’s story excels in its presentation of startling, absurdist juxtapositions of the ancient and modern, expresses bemusement and anger at the strange ways of whites, and tells of the strength and vision that come from his Native tradition.

Praise

“The American Indian poet and novelist Ray A. Young Bear possesses a robust imagination and a wonderfully droll narrative voice.” –The New York Times

“This book is a story with great liveliness. It reminds me of Huckleberry Finn but with real huckleberries this time. The complicated mysteries and zaniness of the Native American soul rise up in the story, and the “other world” crosses this world in a way that is deeply satisfying.” –Robert Bly

“Ray A. Young Bear’s work is the gift of an anguished imagination marked with grief and humor. His writing alternately lashes and heals, but always instructs from a deep vision of the world.” –Louise Erdrich

“Ray A. Young Bear is generally acknowledged as the nation’s foremost contemporary poet. . . . Young Bear is destined for even wider and more fulsome recognition as a national treasure.” –Robert Gish, The Bloomsbury Review

“[Young Bear] speaks from a kind of timeless experience, his voice is the voice of the coyote or singer of Beowulf or the inventor of words.” –N. Scott Momaday