Thomas King – The Inconvenient Indian (2012)

Written with dry wit and humour, King tells the history of Native People in North America from the time of first contact up to the present day. Even while writing with a sense of humour and the popular audience in mind, King manages to craft an incredibly powerful narrative of the years of suffering endured by First Nations at the hands of White people. The earlier chapters in which King makes light of the way Natives have been portrayed in pop culture give way to narratives that detail some of the most painful moments in Native American history, ( The series of Indian Wars in the United States, the Red River Rebellion in Canada, and the Residential School system to name a few.) King does not deny that current day Aboriginals in Canada and Indians in the United States have a lot of problems, but he goes to great pains to show that these problems have been caused by hundreds of years of settler colonialism and broken promises.

King’s goal is to provide an account of Native People in North America, and while stories about First Nations are often depressing, King manages to keep his sense of humour while also causing the reader to stop and think. King is sharp, intelligent, and most importantly, honest in his writing. A though provoking read and highly recommended.

Rating: 5/5

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