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Give Me Some Truth

3.93  ·  Rating details ·  67 Ratings  ·  29 Reviews
Carson Mastick is entering his senior year of high school and desperate to make his mark, on the reservation and off. A rock band -- and winning the local Battle of the Bands, with its first prize of a trip to New York City -- is his best shot. But things keep getting in the way. Small matters like the lack of an actual band, or the fact that his brother just got shot conf ...more
Hardcover, 432 pages
Published May 29th 2018 by Arthur A. Levine Books
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Abby Johnson
It's 1980 and Carson wants to win Battle of the Bands to get a free trip to NYC. But first he needs a band. That's the basic premise of this book, but it's so, so much more than that. Carson is a Tuscarora Indian living on a reservation and at the very beginning of the book his brother is shot and injured when he robs a local restaurant - a restaurant named after and honoring George Custer, famous Indian killer. This starts in motion a social justice movement that will have impact beyond what Ca ...more
Elke (BEroyal)
3.5 stars

This is a story told in dual POV: the 15-year-old Maggi and the 17-year-old Carson, both native American teens, Tuscarora Nation (#ownvoices), living on a reservation near Niagra Falls and the border with Canada in 1980.

My audiobook subscription ends the third, and I really wanted to be able to finish this still. I'm glad I did! I am, however, sad that due to me listening to it I didn't get to see the visual art.

Something that made me extremely uncomfortable was the fact that Jim, a th
Wow, so this was great. I started to draft a long, largely incoherent love letter to this book, and then I remembered Debbie Reese had this to say about Eric Gansworth's first young-adult novel, If I Ever Get Out of Here: http://americanindiansinchildrenslit... , which is both more authoritative and better written than my ramblings. (This isn't a series, but there is some overlap in the two books.)

Anyway, I thought this book was even better than If I Ever Get Out of Here, and I loved the stuff
Samantha (WLABB)
Jul 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018, audiobooks
This was a sometimes wonderful, sometimes sad, and sometimes uncomfortable look at the lives of teens on a Native American reservation.

I really appreciated Carson's awakening during this story, and his growing interest in activism. He considered himself a ChameleIndian, a Native American, who could pass as white. He knew he didn't suffer as much as some other Native Americans. Then his brother opened his eyes to some of the inequities and injustices right in their own backyard, and that was whe
Apr 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018
This is a 4.5 for me for many reasons. When I received this ARC of Eric Gansworth's latest offering, I knew that it would land on the top of my to-read pile, but I also knew that I would want to savor it just as I savored his earlier If I Ever Get Out of Here. I had to wait until the winter break from work to find time for the book, which covers some of the same territory as the previous one, set in and near the reservation and the town of Niagara Falls and featuring a fictionalized version of t ...more
Jul 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya-lit, read-in-2018
3.5ish stars -- this ended up being a lot less about the "teens start a band" conceit than I thought it would be, which isn't necessarily a bad thing! It's very slice-of-life, focusing on six months in the year 1980. The world feels fully fleshed out and lived-in, with Gansworth not pulling any punches when it comes to the realities of life both on and off this specific reservation.

I do feel like the pacing of the character arcs was a bit off, and I had a visceral reaction to Maggi's storyline
Leah Moore
I loved this book! Great characters!
Historical fiction set in 1980, very strong feeling of that time in the story, mostly through music. I seem to be drawn to YA that have music plots - there are a lot of them, and this is one of the best!
I liked learning about life on their reservation, about highschool and the family business of art vending. Historical context of the treaties and issues with US and Canadian governments was well explained.

The romance between the 15yr old girl and 35yr old man w
Feb 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya-fiction
I was given an advance copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Gansworth's latest novel follows the formation of a band and their quest to win a Battle of the Bands through the viewpoint of two Native American teens, Carson and Maggi. I liked the distinct voices of these two characters, and the glimpse I, as a White reader, got into life on Carson's and Maggi's reservation. While the characters don't always make the best decisions, I found them to be well-developed and realistic indiv
Jul 12, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: teen, 2018
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 12, 2018 rated it it was ok
Loved "If I Ever Get Out of Here." Slogged through this, barely. There are plenty of good ingredients here (music-making detail, emotionally intelligent[ish] teen boys, microaggression demonstrations, same great humor), but it's a rambling mess overall. It's hard to see what could be done to fix it, except perhaps to have made this a series of short stories with more POV characters from this community (such as in "A Taste of Honey" by Jabari Asim). As it is, it relies far too heavily on callback ...more
Jun 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm supposed to be out touristing

but I'm in finishing this instead. There's so much to love about this book, from the richness of the voices to the window (for me) aspect to the decision to take Yoko Ono's art seriously (because even in 2018 I hear her name mostly in reference to how she maliciously destroyed the Beatles and really anyone saying that sucks). I also love that neither of the narrators lives a sainted life of kindness and self-awareness and that that's okay: they're wonderful, real
Amy Jacobs
Jun 08, 2018 rated it it was ok
Unfortunately I was unable to enjoy this book as much as others.
I had to force myself to finish reading it, and I feel bad for even admitting that.
Its not that the writing was bad - or even the plot- its just that I couldn't seem to connect with the characters enough to even want to keep reading chapter after chapter.
Maybe I will try again at a later date.
Lauren Phelps
Jun 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
It’s helpful to read Gansworth’s other novel, If I Ever Get Out of Here, before this one as the many of the characters and plot lines overlap (even though this is technically not a sequel.) This is my least favorite of the two books, but I enjoyed listening to Gansworth himself narrating on the audiobook.
Jun 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
I don't know anything about the Beatles, or John Lennon, or Yoko Ono, which is how I know I missed some of the more subtle stuff in this book. It was still incredible, though--well written and emotionally true from start to finish. I loved the dual POV. It fit better and contributed to the story more than any other multi-POV story I can think off offhand.
Apr 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: young-adult
I'm not entirely sure how I feel about the plot and the main character arcs, as neither really moved the needle for me by the end of the book. But my lukewarm feelings there are more than balanced by the deep, powerful sense of setting Gansworth instills, both in terms of the music, art, and fashion of the time period, and the complex depiction of life on a reservation for young people.
I received an ARC of this book from the 2017 YALSA Symposium.

I got to chapter 7 in this book, but I just couldn't finish it. Initially, it reminded me a bit of The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, but it quickly lost that feel. It just felt like the story wasn't going anywhere.
Jul 11, 2018 rated it liked it
This one was slow going for me. However it is a great book.
Jun 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Every bit as great a read as If I Ever Get Out of Here, with even more substance. Well worth the read.
Jul 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
There is so much to talk about in this epic, character-driven tale. It's one I don't think I will soon forget. I can't wait to read If I Ever Get Out of Here soon!
Kelly Koppang
Jul 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
I'm excited to discuss this book with others - I think there is a LOT to talk about.
May 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Such a realistic portrayal from an authentic voice. The characters and plot are intense and engaging. Note that there is significant content.
Apr 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018-mt-bookpile
Life on the Rez isn't easy, but neither is life in the city. Set in 1980s upstate New York, on the Tuscarora reservation and nearby cities, this isn't a sequel to If I Ever Get Out of Here but is set in the same world, with many of the same characters. The blend of reservation life and life outside is skillful, and there's nothing about the lives of Carson, Maggi, Lewis and their families and friends that won't be both familiar and real for readers. The "real world" intrudes in the form of a rac ...more
Jade Kessinger
Jun 04, 2018 rated it liked it
I received an ARC of this book at Yallwest.

3.5 stars.

Give Me Some Truth is a very unique book with characters that have different motivations than most young adult protagonists. They deal with different problems because of their culture and their society, which made this book very interesting. I enjoyed seeing the differences to my life and other novels I have read. At times, this story did tend to drag, and it seemed as though nothing important was happening. However this led to a gradual buil
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Gansworth is an enrolled citizen of the Onondaga Nation; however, he grew up in the Tuscarora Nation as a descendant of one of two Onondaga women present among the Tuscarora at the foundation of the nation in the 18th century. Gansworth originally qualified in electroencephalography, considered a profession useful to his nation; however, he went on to study literature and to continue a lifelong in ...more
More about Eric Gansworth

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