Prudence: A Novel

Prudence: A Novel

by David Treuer


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A haunting and unforgettable novel about love, loss, race, and desire in World War II–era America.

On a sweltering day in August 1942, Frankie Washburn returns to his family's rustic Minnesota resort for one last visit before he joins the war as a bombardier, headed for the darkened skies over Europe. Awaiting him are his hovering mother, his distant father, the Indian caretaker who's been more of a father to him than his own, and Billy, the childhood friend who over the years has become something much more intimate. But before the homecoming can be celebrated, the search for a German soldier, escaped from the POW camp across the river, explodes in a shocking act of violence, with consequences that will reverberate years into the future for all of them and that will shape how each of them makes sense of their lives.
Powerful and wholly original, Prudence is a story of desire, loss, and the search for connection in a riven world; of race and class in a supposedly more innocent era. Most profoundly, it's about the secrets we choose to keep, the ones we can't help telling, and whom – and how – we’re supposed to love.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781594634079
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 02/09/2016
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 272
Sales rank: 773,819
Product dimensions: 7.90(w) x 5.10(h) x 0.80(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

David Treuer is Ojibwe from the Leech Lake Reservation in northern Minnesota. The author of three previous novels and two books of nonfiction, he has also written for The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Esquire, Slate, and The Washington Post, among others. He has a Ph.D. in anthropology and teaches literature and creative writing at the University of Southern California.

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Excerpted from "Prudence"
by .
Copyright © 2016 David Treuer.
Excerpted by permission of Penguin Publishing Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

Praise for PRUDENCE: 

"So good that when you get to the end, you'll want to reread the beginning to see how the author set his magic in motion...This gorgeously restrained novel has much to say about race, class, gender, sexuality, love and war through the stories of men and women whose fates become urgently important to us.” —More

“Treuer’s writing is supple, his story intricate. That it’s set against the backdrop of one of the most tumultuous periods in history makes it all the more haunting and powerful.” —Out

“David Treuer's experience writing about Native American history and culture is apparent in this analysis of race and memory.” —Huffington Post

“Magnetizing and richly original…[with] extraordinarily affecting characters … Treuer’s trenchant and compassionate novel glimmers with nature’s potent beauty, fresh historical detail, and scrupulous insight.” —Booklist (starred review)

“Achingly moving… speaks volumes about…integrity, culpability, and resilience in the face of collective tragedy.”  —Publisher’s Weekly

“A self-assured, absorbing story…[that] explores the darkness at our cores” —Kirkus Reviews

“Thoughtful and engaging… a well-told tale with realistically portrayed characters…[and] a voice that is low key but forceful…[and] elevate[s] this story to a powerful level.”—Library Journal

"David Treuer's novel Prudence is a wondrous and mesmerizing narrative—intricate, seductive and wholly gratifying." —Toni Morrison

"This is a beautiful, somber, unlikely love story, as pure as the Minnesota landscape against which it is tragically played out."  —Edmund White
“A haunting, brilliant, richly layered novel of intersecting and interlocking destinies—a novel that reminds us just how complicated American history really is, whether played out in the halls of Princeton, the battlefields of Europe, or the creeks and lakes of Ojibwe land. I can't recommend it highly enough." —Jess Row

"Prudence is an excellent, page-turning mystery,  and at the same time delves deeply into characters whose lives are rarely portrayed in our literature.  David Treuer is a truly original and necessary voice in American fiction."—Dan Chaon
“What a magnificent, heartbreaking, important novel. Prudence is beautifully orchestrated in its movement through time, with tenderly wrought characters, startling collisions, and a spellbinding spiral of disclosures.” —Joanna Scott
“With language that is tender yet masculine, charged but unsentimental, David Treuer has imagined a truly American story and landscape.  It is full of questions about identity, loyalty and place.  I was taken and remain taken by this novel.” —Percival Everett

Praise for REZ LIFE: 
“[Treuer’s] upbringing on an Ojibwe reservation in Minnesota makes him adept at delving behind stereotypes of Indian life and infuses his account with passion and meticulousness.”—The New Yorker
 “Blends memoir and history to reveal what life on a reservation is really like - neither the festival of dysfunction nor the oasis of noble, nature-loving stoics that many non-Indians imagine. … [A] blistering, illuminating, ultimately hopeful book.”—Kate Tuttle, Boston Globe
 “An affecting portrait of his childhood home, Leech Lake Indian Reservation, and his people, the Ojibwe.”—The New York Times
"An invaluable study and vivid account of problematic life on our reservations by a writer—a very good writer!—raised 'on the rez' who knows what he's talking about only too well and also knows how to tell a story, lots of stories, that document and effectively banish a number of misconceptions still held by white society. Highly recommended." —Peter Matthiessen
“Applied to a book, the word ‘important’ can glaze the eyes. An ‘important’ book sounds like an earnest, educational one you should read, when you get to it, someday, maybe. Rez Life is important in the word's best sense — one you'll want to read if you're at all curious about contemporary American Indians. It's important in the way Dee Brown's Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee was when it came out in 1970, deeply moving readers as it schooled them about Indian history in a way nothing else had.”—Pamela Miller, Minneapolis Star-Tribune
“Treuer sees all the poverty, the gangs and the alcohol, but he also sees great beauty in some of the last places untouched by commercial development. He hears the stories of his people in the language of his people, and he sees the pride of survivors.”—Neal Conan, NPR
"Deeply crafty, shape-shifting. . . . [Treuer] seems to want to do for Native American culture and literature what James Joyce did for the Irish: haul it into the mainstream of Western culture through sheer nerve and verve." —The Washington Post
"The Translation of Dr Apelles . . . provides new layers of information and meaning with every pass. This Escher-esque craftsmanship dazzles." —The Seattle Times
“David Treuer is mounting a challenge to the whole idea of Indian identity as depicted by both Native and white writers." —The New York Times
Praise for THE HIAWATHA:
"Treuer is truly an original voice."—The San Francisco Chronicle
Praise for LITTLE:
"Mr. Treuer's accomplishment is a wonder. Out of the seasons and landscapes of a Minnesota reservation David Treuer has forged a strong intricate narrative complete with the intimate voices of fully realized characters."—Toni Morrison

Customer Reviews