House Made of Dawn

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University of Arizona Press, 1968 - Fiction - 212 pages
10 Reviews
The magnificent Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of a proud stranger in his native land.

He was a young American Indian named Abel, and he lived in two worlds. One was that of his father, wedding him to the rhythm of the seasons, the harsh beauty of the land, the ecstasy of the drug called "peyote." The other was the world of the twentieth century, goading him into a compulsive cycle of sexual exploits, dissipation, and disgust. Home from a foreign war, he was a man being torn apart, a man descending into hell.

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User Review  - jgrwriter - LibraryThing

House made of Dawn is filled with vivid imagery. This novel is not meant to "tell" a story, but rather "show" it. I believe Momaday honors the oral tradition of storytelling, with leaps and turns and ... Read full review

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User Review  - dbsovereign - LibraryThing

A poetic journey onto the rez, this book can transform you. So many of us (yes, even non-native Americans) are caught between the land and the city much like Momaday (and his character). Read full review


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About the author (1968)

Navarre Scott Momaday was born on February 27, 1934 in Lawton, Okla. to Kiowa parents who successfully bridged the gap between Native American and white ways, but remained true to their heritage. Momaday attended the University of New Mexico and earned an M.A and a Ph.D. from Stanford University in 1963. A member of the Gourd Dance Society of the Kiowa Tribe, Momaday has received a plethora of writing accolades, including the Academy of American Poets prize for The Bear and the 1969 Pulitzer Prize for fiction for House Made of Dawn. He also shared the Western Heritage Award with David Muench in 1974 for the nonfiction book Colorado: Summer/Fall/Winter/Spring, and he is the author of the film adaptation of Frank Water's novel, The Man Who Killed the Deer. His work, The Names is composed of tribal tales, boyhood memories, and family histories. Another book, The Way to Rainy Mountain, melds myth, history, and personal recollection into a Kiowa tribe narrative. Throughout his writings, Momaday celebrate his Kiowa Native American heritage in structure, theme, and subject matter, often dealing with the man-nature relationship as a central theme and sustaining the Indian oral tradition.

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