Take This Man (Hardcover)

By Brando Skyhorse

Simon & Schuster, 9781439170878, 258pp.

Publication Date: June 3, 2014

List Price: 26.00*
* Individual store prices may vary.

June 2014 Indie Next List

“Skyhorse lived with his mother, grandmother, and, at one time or another, five of his mother's husbands, some of whom arrived via her classified ads, and none of whom could succeed completely in becoming a father to Brando. His birth father and mother were Mexicans, but his mother thought he should take the name Skyhorse from a husband she wed while he was in jail for murder. When Marlon Brando refused an Oscar award in a protest sympathetic to Native Americans, she decided to change his legal name to Brando, which was only the beginning of a host of incredible deceits purportedly made on his behalf. This is simply an awesome story, told with breathtaking skill and originality, of a wily and courageous boy's fight to find, and to know, his family.”
— Richard Howorth, Square Books, Oxford, MS
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Named one of Kirkus Reviews Best Nonfiction Books of 2014
One of NBC News's 10 Best Latino Books of 2014

From PEN/Hemingway award winner Brando Skyhorse comes this stunning, heartfelt memoir in the vein of The Glass Castle or The Tender Bar, the true story of a boy's turbulent childhood growing up with five stepfathers and the mother who was determined to give her son everything but the truth.

When he was three years old, Brando Kelly Ulloa was abandoned by his Mexican father. His mother, Maria, dreaming of a more exciting life, saw no reason for her son to live his life as a Mexican just because he started out as one. The life of "Brando Skyhorse," the American Indian son of an incarcerated political activist, was about to begin.

Through a series of letters to Paul Skyhorse Johnson, a stranger in prison for armed robbery, Maria reinvents herself and her young son as American Indians in the colorful Mexican-American neighborhood of Echo Park, California. There Brando and his mother live with his acerbic grandmother and a rotating cast of surrogate fathers. It will be over thirty years before Brando begins to untangle the truth of his own past, when a surprise discovery online leads him to his biological father at last.

From an acclaimed, prize-winning novelist celebrated for his "indelible storytelling" (O, The Oprah Magazine), this extraordinary literary memoir captures a son's single-minded search for a father wherever he can find one, and is destined to become a classic.

Coverage from NPR