Popsugar Reading Challenge category: A book you know nothing about
Book: The Sentence, by Louise Erdrich
I'd read some of Erdrich's poetry before, but none of her fiction. This one is set in a Minneapolis bookstore that specializes in Native American literature. The narrator, Tookie (who like the author is Ojibwe), has a particularly annoying customer, Flora - the kind of "wannabe" who insists she was "Indian in a former life." Flora dies suddenly while reading a nearly-illegible manuscript of Native history. Tookie becomes increasingly convinced that Flora is haunting the bookstore, and she can't figure out why.
The story takes place in 2020, and the book really captures the feel of the confused early days of the pandemic, when no one knew quite what was happening, how much danger there was, or how to stay safe. And it's equally evocative about the grief and rage after the George Floyd murder by police in May of that year. The book mixes the real and supernatural in a way that absolutely rings true.