Allen was a powerful Native American author who wrote with wisdom and passion. Her work has significantly increased both awareness of and understanding of American Indian literature. Two of Allen’s key strengths were her mastery of her subject matter and the care with which she expressed her ideas, whether in fiction, poetry, or criticism. Although her earlier writings are at times uneven and obscure, her later writings have an undeniable sharpness of vision. Her body of work is evocative, potent, and life-affirming.