In Painted Drum, Louise Erdrich, the daughter of a Chippewa mother and a German-American father, explores Native-American themes in her works, with major characters representing both sides of her heritage. In this novel, a priceless Ojibwe artifact and the effect it has had on those who have come into contact with it over the years, is the focus. While appraising the estate of a New Hampshire family descended from a North Dakota Indian agent, Faye Travers is startled to discover a rare moose skin and cedar drum fashioned long ago by an Ojibwe artisan. And so begins an illuminating journey both backward and forward in time, following the strange passage of a powerful yet delicate instrument, and revealing the extraordinary lives it has touched and defined. Compelling and unforgettable, Louise Erdrich's Painted Drum explores the often-fraught relationship between mothers and daughters, the strength of family, and the intricate rhythms of grief with all the grace, wit, and startling beauty.