Summary: Winner of the Frankfurt eBook Award for Best Nonfiction Book Also Available as an eBook In Native American tradition, a warrior gained honor and glory by "counting coup": touching his enemy in battle and living to tell the tale. This is a modern story of...
COUNTING COUP In this extraordinary work of journalism, Larry Colton journeys into the world of Montana's Crow Indians and follows the struggles of a talented, moody, charismatic young wo ...show moreman named Sharon LaForge, a gifted basketball player and a descendant of one of George Armstrong Custer's Indian scouts. But COUNTING COUP is far more than just a sports story or a portrait of youth. It is a sobering exposé of a part of our society long since cut out of the American dream. Along the banks of the Little Big Horn, Indians and whites live in age-old conflict and young Indians grow up without role models or dreams. Here Sharon carries the hopes and frustrations of her people on her shoulders as she battles her opponents on and off the court. Colton delves into Sharon's life and shows us the realities of the reservation, the shattered families, the bitter tribal politics, and a people's struggle against a belief that all their children-even the most intelligent and talented-are destined for heartbreak. Against this backdrop stands Sharon, a fiery, undaunted competitor with the skill to dominate a high school game and earn a college scholarship. Yet getting to college seems beyond Sharon's vision, obscured by the daily challenge of getting through the season-physically and psychologically-in one piece. As Sharon competes on the court, and her team moves toward the state championship, the pieces of her life come together in a jarring picture. Here we meet her estranged, alcoholic mother and even more distant father. We meet Sharon's loving but permissive grandmother. We meet other Crow, young and old, who see Sharon not as a person but as a symbol of struggle. And here we meet Sharon's teammates and friends, Indian and white, in a cauldron of teenage relationships, replete with illicit love affairs, betrayals, drinking, and pregnancy. A vivid, unforgettable portrait of a little-seen part of America, COUNTING COUP dramatically chronicles the way the sins of the past are visited upon the present. Most of all, this moving, engrossing account makes us care deeply about Sharon LaForge: her fights, her future, and our own hope that having touched her enemies in battle, she will live to tell the story. ...show less
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