Night of the Living Rez

You must sign in to see if this title is available for request.
Send NetGalley books directly to your Kindle or Kindle app

To read on a Kindle or Kindle app, please add as an approved email address to receive files in your Amazon account. Click here for step-by-step instructions.
Also find your Kindle email address within your Amazon account, and enter it here.
Pub Date 05 Jul 2022 | Archive Date 30 Jun 2022

Talking about this book? Use #NightoftheLivingRez #NetGalley. More hashtag tips!


“I am not predicting literary success for Morgan Talty, I am guaranteeing it. He is a fascinating and powerful and singular writer.” —Rick Bass, author of For a Little While

How do the living come back to life?

Set in a Native community in Maine, Night of the Living Rez is a riveting debut collection about what it means to be Penobscot in the twenty-first century and what it means to live, to survive, and to persevere after tragedy.

In twelve striking, luminescent stories, author Morgan Talty—with searing humor, abiding compassion, and deep insight—breathes life into tales of family and community bonds as they struggle with a painful past and an uncertain future. A boy unearths a jar that holds an old curse, which sets into motion his family’s unraveling; a man, while trying to swindle some pot from a dealer, discovers a friend passed out in the woods, his hair frozen into the snow; a grandmother suffering from Alzheimer’s projects the past onto her grandson, and thinks he is her dead brother come back to life; and two friends, inspired by Antiques Roadshow, attempt to rob the tribal museum for valuable root clubs.

In a collection that examines the consequences and merits of inheritance, Night of the Living Rez is an unforgettable portrayal of a Native community and marks the arrival of a standout talent in contemporary fiction.

About the Author: Morgan Talty is a citizen of the Penobscot Indian Nation where he grew up. Named one of Narrative's "30 Below 30," Talty's work has appeared in The Georgia Review, Shenandoah, TriQuarterly, Narrative Magazine, LitHub, and elsewhere. He lives in Levant, Maine.

“I am not predicting literary success for Morgan Talty, I am guaranteeing it. He is a fascinating and powerful and singular writer.” —Rick Bass, author of For a Little While

How do the living come...

Advance Praise

"There is so much brutal, raw, and beautiful power in these stories. I kept wanting to read and know more about these peoples’ lives, how they ended up where they ended up, how they would get out, how they wouldn’t. It is difficult to be so honest, and funny, and sad, at once, in any kind of work. Reading this book, I literally laughed and cried." - Tommy Orange

"Morgan Talty's Night of the Living Rez is a beautifully crafted, raw and intimate book about youth, friendship, and family on the reservation. These stories are profoundly moving and essential, rendered with precision and intimacy. Talty is a powerful new voice in Native American fiction." - Brandon Hobson, National Book Award finalist and author of The Removed

"A collection of stories set in a Native community in Maine, Talty’s book centers questions of what it means to be Penobscot today—what it means to live through and reckon with historical tragedies. Talty grapples with such complicated inheritances with tenderness and humor, with characters ranging from a boy who finds an old curse in a jar to a grandmother struggling with Alzheimer’s." - LitHub

"Twelve incredible stories. . . . Haunting, insightful, and just plain excellent." - Book Riot

"Evokes the short, sad misadventures in Denis Johnson’s Jesus’ Son. . . . For a fan of Johnson’s work, the comparison forms with an instant, pleasurable shock." - Publishers Weekly

"Night of the Living Rez is a fiercely intelligent and beautifully written set of stories—a spectacularly visceral and moving account of the experience of a member of the Penobscot Nation in today’s America—as well as a wrenching meditation on family and familial dysfunction. Morgan Talty is a master of the way dependency and pain transition from one body to another; the way both separating and refusing to separate become modes of saving ourselves; and the way, for all of our failures, we never stop doing what we can to provide each other hope." - Jim Shepard

"Night of the Living Rez is true storytelling. It's a book so funny, so real, so spirited and vivid it brought me back to my own rez life and the people who made me." - Terese Mailhot

"There is so much brutal, raw, and beautiful power in these stories. I kept wanting to read and know more about these peoples’ lives, how they ended up where they ended up, how they would get out...

Available Editions

EDITION Paperback
ISBN 9781953534187
PRICE $16.95 (USD)

Available on NetGalley

NetGalley Shelf App (PDF)
Send to Kindle (PDF)
Download (PDF)

Average rating from 37 members

Featured Reviews

This is one of those books that will stay with you for a long time after you read it.

The short stories are interconnected and center on Penobscot rez life in Maine. There's some humor for sure, but also a lot of sadness and beauty. A lot of family and traditions. It feels like an important book and an important story to tell, and I'm very appreciative to NetGalley, the publisher, and the author for letting me read an ARC of the book.

Was this review helpful?

Night of the Living Rez is fantastic! A big, beautiful and haunting series of 12 stories.

This debut collection by Morgan Talty, a Penobscot Native American, takes place in a Native American Community in Maine. The stories are funny, sad, and memorable as you meet a series of Penobscot Natives living in contemporary America in abject poverty. This is a true window into a community as Talty magically brings you inside and you feel a part of the choices (both good and bad) made by main character David and his friends and family.

Theses stories draw you in, hypnotise you really. I suspect this will be a pivotal work and Talty will be a name to know going forward. I am speechless that this is his first published work! If you like stories that connect, gritty dark humor, interested in learning more about our own Indigenous Americans, than run - don't walk - to get this fabulous work of art!
#NetGalley #NetGalleyReads #NighoftheLivingRez #TinHouse

Was this review helpful?

I found this connected series of short stories nothing short of exceptional. Even though this is the author’s first published collection, it shows great expertise in its delicacy, concision and emotional impact. The circumstances of my childhood could not have been more different yet I recognized myself in David. This for me is the mark of an author who can describe a unique situation so well that it becomes universal. This is a book that builds slowly inside you. By the time you get to “Safe Harbor” Talty has worked you so deeply you are ready to be undone. Pretty fabulous work of Native literature, American literature and just literature.

Was this review helpful?

I am not normally a big fan of short stories, but this book is full of beautifully written stories of love and loss and family that drew me in immediately. I am in awe of Talty's writing and am thrilled that his stories were compiled here for his first book and cannot recommend it enough, even with the hard subject matter in some of the stories. Thank you to Tin House Books and NetGalley for the chance to read this great book early.

Was this review helpful?

Readers who liked this book also liked: