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One Good Story, That One

4.02 of 5 stars 4.02  ·  rating details  ·  365 ratings  ·  24 reviews
Named in the University of Toronto Bookstore Review as one of the top100 Canadian books of all time

There is much more than one good story in this bestselling (over 10,000 copies sold) collection of short fiction. In fact, there are more than a few of the best examples of native storytelling ever published. Thomas King, author of the acclaimed Medicine River and Green Gra
Paperback, 147 pages
Published December 20th 1999 by Harper Perennial (first published 1993)
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The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman AlexieLove Medicine by Louise ErdrichBeyond Bridalveil Fall by Sheryl SealThe Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven by Sherman AlexieGreen Grass, Running Water by Thomas King
Best Native American/First Nations Fiction
115th out of 349 books — 226 voters
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman AlexieThe Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven by Sherman AlexieBeyond Oria Falls by Sheryl SealLove Medicine by Louise ErdrichCeremony by Leslie Marmon Silko
Native American Fiction
215th out of 526 books — 496 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 649)
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B. Mason
This is the first collection I've read by Thomas King and I was immediately struck by his definitive and disarming wit. There are times in these stories I found myself wondering how much of this is anecdote but then he pulls it all together by the end. Probably the best example of this is Trap Lines where the father's recollections of the past with his father and inability to connect with his son is brought to a close as the son leaves for college and the reader is left to wonder if he's unable ...more
Mary Lynn
I heard Thomas King read from this way back when it came out - at the Eden Mills Writers' Festival. He's wonderful, as is this.
Laurie Burns
great stories, very creative and really made me think.
really a great read, with a lot of variety.
Love these stories because they say so much more than what they say.
Alyson Hagy
One of the most remarkable story collections in my library. King's use of voice and humor is brilliant...and deft. And his ability to undermine expectations about what a story (particularly an Aboriginal story) *should* do is unparalleled. The title story is a classic, but each piece is lovely and funny and will set you on your ear in unforgettable ways. Re-cast fairly tales are all the rage now. But readers who seek the power of the "fabulous" should get their hands on this book. Thomas King an ...more
Kat A
An excellent collection of Native short stories. A prize winner in many categories, Thomas King is a stellar story teller. There are a thousand and one interpretations and hidden meanings. Especially notable is the story Borders about a woman who, when crossing the border to the U.S., refuses to identify herself as anything other than Blackfoot, even though there are Blackfeet on either side of the border. This book takes less than an hour to read, but will will leave a lasting impact.
Thomas King has a wonderful sense of irony and he communicates that brilliantly in this collection of stories. Having had to write an essay on the first story, it is clear that there is much more to discover after the initial read.

I love King's use of orality in several of the stories, and also the twists he spins on classic tales like the biblical "Adam and Eve" from a First Nations perspective.

King really makes you think.
Shonna Froebel
This collection of stories mixes Christian symbolism, Native myth, materialism, and bureaucracy together in ways not seen before. King takes from a variety of sources to create humorous and entertaining tales. The native element is strong and Coyote appears in many of the stories here. King's writing also uses satire to bring out the story and these are no exception.
I found the stories mesmerizing and thoroughly enjoyed this book.
I really, really enjoyed Green Grass, Running Water, and I always have a soft spot for short stories, so I picked this up. The good news is that it reminds me of his novel. The bad news is that it reminds me of his novel a lot. There are stories that are practically recycled, they’re so close, and while I did enjoy it, I wasn’t quite sure why King decided it was a good idea to plagiarize himself.
lol. First, you need a sense of humour. Second, you need the barest of understanding of Aboriginal storytelling. Third, you need to get past political correctness. What fun this little collection is. I can hear the voice, I get the laughs, I admire King's frankness. I had to read this (one story out of the collection) for a class I'm taking at AU, but I'll be keeping it on my shelf.
Amy Ariel
Now I want to read it all again.

Thomas King is a Canadian national treasure. These stories are very funny, political and brimming with both a strong social conscience and native pride. King's writing always reflects his native oral-storytelling tradition, so any would-be writer out there who would like lessons in voice or characterization through dialogue should check this out.
Easy to read short stories that pack a wallop, quite apart from being funny and frequently furious. I especially loved Borders and Trapline. Can't recommend it enough
Good stories. Sometimes King's "cadence" got in the way of my comprehension (my problem, not his). Recommended.
Oct 30, 2013 Andy added it
Loved it! I love Thomas King's style: it's so original and it's like he's talking to you rather than writing.
What a wonderful story teller. These stories are funny and hard and tender and brilliant.
Only had to read the first story for a course. It was the first one and I didn't get it.
Mar 13, 2012 Jaclyn marked it as to-read
Have to read this one as part of our "Indian Ed for All" book club at school.
Still a classic; I haven't got much to add to the reviews already posted.
You don't write 30 pages about a book and not learn to love/hate it.
Dry wit. Pointed commentary. Humor.
Typical King. A wonderful read!
Megan Alanna Strachan
Interesting perspectives!
Jul 29, 2014 Sean added it
Good book.
Danielle marked it as to-read
Aug 13, 2015
Juria marked it as to-read
Aug 12, 2015
Kayli Mckay
Kayli Mckay marked it as to-read
Aug 07, 2015
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Thomas King was born in 1943 in Sacramento, California and is of Cherokee, Greek and German descent. He obtained his Ph.D from the University of Utah in 1986. He is known for works in which he addresses the marginalization of American Indians, delineates "pan-Indian" concerns and histories, and attempts to abolish common stereotypes about Native Americans. He taught Native American Studies at the ...more
More about Thomas King...
Green Grass, Running Water The Inconvenient Indian: A Curious Account of Native People in North America The Truth About Stories: A Native Narrative  Medicine River The Back of the Turtle

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