Extra Indians
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Extra Indians

3.69 of 5 stars 3.69  ·  rating details  ·  49 ratings  ·  16 reviews
Every winter, Tommy Jack McMorsey watches the meteor showers in northern Minnesota. On the long haul from Texas to Minnesota, Tommy encounters a deluded Japanese tourist determined to find the buried ransom money from the movie Fargo. When the Japanese tourist dies of exposure in Tommy Jack’s care, a media storm erupts and sets off a series of journeys into Tommy Jack’s pa...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published November 1st 2010 by Milkweed Editions (first published July 1st 2010)
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Heather Pearson
Vietnam veteran Tommy Jack McMorsey is working as a truck driver when he happens into an odd situation. A Japanese tourist is searching in the snow behind a truck stop for the missing ransom money from the fictional movie Fargo. Tommy Jack doesn't feel right about leaving her there; he asks her if she wants to ride along with him. Later she goes out into the winter night, lies down in the snow and dies in her sleep.

The ensuing police investigation and media interest sets Tommy Jack on a very pub...more
As anyone who's read the back flap of this book before buying it (or taking it home from the library) will know, the story begins with the death of a Japanese woman in North Dakota, who's searching for the ransom money depicted in the movie Fargo. There's an author's note at the end of the book that says, hey, you probably think this is a preposterous fiction, but google it - it really happened.

Trouble is, that's not the preposterous part of the book. What doesn't hang together very well is ever...more
I'm struggling with rating this one. Gansworth made some unusual moves here, and a few of them were a bit jarring (a bookend event that seemed to get only perfunctory attention at the end of the novel; circular or hard-to-follow sentence structures; strange chronology). So, at first, I wasn't sure the guy knew what he was doing. By page 100, however, I cared deeply for the characters and was hooked on the plot. I felt Gansworth was less successful when he was writing as the woman narrator, and s...more
Extra Indians, the latest tour de force from Eric Gansworth, is a rollicking, engrossing, and big-hearted novel that defies expectations at every hair-raising turn.

Tommy Jack McMorsey – a West Texas flatlands native, Vietnam vet, flawed husband and father, and long haul driver – travels from Texas to northern Minnesota annually to watch the meteor showers and wish upon the stars. But on one cold night, he chances upon a deluded Japanese tourist who is searching for the buried ransom money from t...more
The author switches between narrators to tell the story of a truck driver whose chance meeting with a mentally ill Japanese woman searching for the hidden stash from Fargo brings to light his sins of the past--from Vietnam to his affair with a Native woman on through his marriage to his high-school sweetheart. It sounds sordid, but it's not; Gansworth handles the material well by delivering the story in a colloquial style, through letters, flashbacks, and present circumstances. Long after you fi...more
Mike Tarasovic
Not much to say about this one. I picked it up randomly after school one day at a bookstore that was mostly concerned with revolutionary and LBGT literature (oh, Lower East Side). I guess this book's counter-culture credibility came from being mostly about American Indians, but there was nothing particularly subversive about it. The main shortcoming to me was that the author developed one truly interesting character - Tommy Jack McMorsey - and everyone else just seemed to be there to serve the s...more
This book had a powerful impact on me. I appreciate the point of view of a Viet Nam vet returning to the questioning looks of his small town neighbors. Could anyone other than his army buddy understand his experience? But the book is about so much more. What happens when you fall in love with someone who isn't available? What questions are harbored by children who aren't raised by their biological parents? How does the sometimes distorted portrayal of people in the media impact lives? Was there...more
pretty carzy story of an onondaga over the road trucker tommy jack mcmorsey who, while making his annual pilgrimage back up north to look at the meteor showers, picks up a japanese tourist who is looking for the buried treasure from the movie fargo. things start to fall apart after that" frozen japanese tourists, vietnam flashbacks, failed marriage and semi failed love affair, best friend's suicide, and white people who just don't like tommy jack. interesting take on modern indians in usa.
Here's Jill's review:


I had my eye on this one for awhile -- actually requested an ARC from NetGalley and received it but couldn't manage to read it on my iPod (which is how I normally read Kindle books) followed the instructions to no avail.

Finally ended up buying it and reading it after Jill's review was posted.
I think the two story lines (the woman searching for the Fargo ransom and Tommy Jack and Fred's intertwined lives) are woven together beautifully. There are some points where the first story line seems to only serve one purpose: to get the story going. All in all, it's an interesting read and kept me turning the pages.
I really wanted to like this, but finally it was a disappointment. Can someone explain to me why you'd write in first person if that person's voice was not verbally lively/curious/informed/elegant/eloquent/etc.?
I occasionally lost track of the storyline as I was reading too many other books at the same time and the narrator shifts around, but enjoyed how the threads wove together in the last few chapters.
Edward Sullivan
Witty, compassionate, and powerful. A cleverly crafted story.
Lisa Lesyshen
What a gem! I am so excited that I stumbled across this book.
Milkweed Editions
NAIBA Book of the Year for Trade Paperback Original (2011)
Well written. A great story, very different.
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