In this New York Times bestselling novel, Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award-winning author Louise Erdrich creates a wickedly funny ghost story, a tale of passion, of a complex marriage, and of a woman's relentless errors.
Louise Erdrich's latest novel, The Sentence, asks what we owe to the living, the dead, to the reader and to the book. A small independent bookstore in Minneapolis is haunted from November 2019 to November 2020 by the store's most annoying customer. Flora dies on All Souls' Day, but she simply won't leave the store. Tookie, who has landed a job selling books after years of incarceration that she survived by reading with murderous attention, must solve the mystery of this haunting while at the same time trying to understand all that occurs in Minneapolis during a year of grief, astonishment, isolation, and furious reckoning.
The Sentence begins on All Souls' Day 2019 and ends on All Souls' Day 2020. Its mystery and proliferating ghost stories during this one year propel a narrative as rich, emotional, and profound as anything Louise Erdrich has written.
This was my introduction to Louise Erdrich's writing and I'm ashamed to say, the first book I've read by an Indigenous author. Erdrich's writing is beautiful, without being flowery. I absolutely loved Tookie, the MC, and her family. I don't know if reading a work a fiction that is set during the pandemic and includes George Floyd's murder was my problem, but I could have actually done without those parts of the book. I'm not sure they added a whole lot to the story. I think the first half of the book was near perfection but I think the second half struggled under too many major plots; it just kind of unraveled for me a little bit. I'll definitely read more of Erdrich's work, though! I really enjoyed the Indigenous culture and perspective peppered throughout the book (much like Pollux's way of peppering his apples).