Tommy Orange, Author of Latest One Book, One Chicago Selection, on Co...

It was 16 years ago when a visit to Chicago served as a revelation for award-winning author Tommy Orange.

A trip to Chicago’s American Indian Center set him off on a journey to writing about the urban experience of Native Americans.

“It was the beginning of my understanding that this urban Native story was happening in all the major cities across the country, and it was the beginning of an understanding of a deeper concept of life in this country,” he said.

Orange’s novel, “There There,” has been chosen as the latest selection for the Chicago Public Library’s One Book, One Chicago program. The book, a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, tells the story of Native American life, not as it existed centuries ago, but as it does now.

Orange grew up and resides in Oakland, California, and says he wanted to change the image of Native Americans in popular culture.

“80% of us live in cities now and it’s been that way for over a decade,” Orange said. “We haven’t updated…

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