House of Purple Cedar (Paperback)

House of Purple Cedar By Tim Tingle Cover Image


Best Young Adult Novel, American Indian Library Association

A Choctaw tale of tragedy, good and evil, revenge and ultimately forgiveness, laced with healing Choctaw humor and a little magical realism thrown in.

"The hour has come to speak of troubled times. It is time we spoke of Skullyville."

Thus begins Rose Goode's story of growing up in Indian Territory in pre-statehood Oklahoma. Skullyville, a once-thriving Choctaw community, was destroyed by land-grabbers, culminating in the arson of New Hope Academy for Girls in 1896. Twenty Choctaw girls died, but Rose escaped. She was blessed by the presence of her grandmother Pokoni and her grandfather Amafo, both respected elders who understand the old ways.

Soon after the fire, the White sheriff beats Amafo in front of the town's people, humiliating him. Instead of asking the Choctaw community to avenge the beating, her grandfather decides to follow the path of forgiveness. And so unfolds this tale of mystery, Indigenous magical realism, and deep wisdom. It's a world where backwoods spiritualism and Bible-thumping Christianity mix with bad guys; a one-legged woman shop-keeper, her oaf of a husband, herbal potions, and shape-shifting panthers rendering justice.

Tim Tingle--a scholar of his nation's language, culture, and spirituality--tells Rose's story of good and evil with a local perspective and even laugh-out-loud Choctaw humor.

About the Author

Tim Tingle is an Oklahoma Choctaw, an award-winning storyteller, and the author of more than twenty books for children, teenagers, and adults. His titles have been recognized by the American Indian Youth Literature Award four times and nominated for numerous state awards. He received his master's degree from the University of Oklahoma with a focus in American Indian Studies. Tingle lives in Texas. Visit his website at
Product Details
ISBN: 9781935955245
ISBN-10: 1935955241
Publisher: Cinco Puntos Press
Publication Date: February 18th, 2014
Pages: 336
Language: English