by Joshua Whitehead
Arsenal Pulp Press
"You're gonna need a rock and a whole lotta medicine" is a mantra that Jonny Appleseed, a young Two-Spirit/Indigiqueer, repeats to himself in this vivid and utterly compelling novel.
Off the reserve and trying to find ways to live and love in the big city, Jonny becomes a cybersex worker who fetishizes himself in order to make a living. Self-ordained as an NDN glitter princess, Jonny has one week before he must return to the "rez," and his former life, to attend the funeral of his stepfather. The next seven days are like a fevered dream: stories of love, trauma, sex, kinship, ambition, and the heartbreaking recollection of his beloved kokum (grandmother). Jonny's world is a series of breakages, appendages, and linkages--and as he goes through the motions of preparing to return home, he learns how to put together the pieces of his life.
Jonny Appleseed is a unique, shattering vision of Indigenous life, full of grit, glitter, and dreams.
Unflinching and intimate, Joshua Whitehead takes his readers on a journey to the heart of an NDN glitter princess with generous, swooning prose. Unforgettable. --Eden Robinson, author of Son of a Trickster
If we're lucky, we'll find one or two books in a lifetime that change the language of story, that manage to illuminate new curves in the flat vessels of old letters and words. This is one of those books. --Cherie Dimaline, author of The Marrow Thieves
With only seven days until he returns home for his stepfather's funeral, Appleseed spends a pyretic week attempting to reconcile the competing factions of his life: sex, friends, work, sex, family, identity, sex. Throughout, memories of his kokum (grandmother) intrude upon the chaos, and these unexpected moments of remembrance prove most striking. A radically original new voice. -- Booklist
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