Round House by Louise Erdrich. The finalists for the 2013 awards were announced on October 16th, and I have not read any of them yet. Yikes!! See this year's finalists at www.nationalbook.org.
I should not have waited so long to read Joe's story in Round House. Until the spring of 1988, Joe Coutts lives a typical life on a reservation in North Dakota. His father is an Ojibewe tribal judge and his mother is a tribal enrollment specialist. He and his friends go to school, watch Star Trek: The Next Generation, play video games, talk about girls, and drink beer whenever they can get away with it. His life is nothing out of the ordinary for a thirteen year old boy. Then his mother is brutally attacked and Joe's life is turned upside down. His mother, Geraldine, goes into a deep depression, and Joe learns that his father and tribal law can do nothing to bring her attacker to justice. Joe wants his mother to be well, and he wants his life back to normal. Joe and his friends decide to take action.
Read this book! Round House will not only entertain you, but as a bonus you will learned something about tribal law and jurisdiction in this tale well told.