Sunday, July 1, 2018

Celebrating Canada's 150th: July

Sorry Ladies, it's Thomas King again this month... and until I read them all, I can't promise that this is the last time I talk about his books! 

Book Summary: Strong, Sassy women and hard-luck hardheaded men, all searching for the middle ground between Native American tradition and the modern world, perform an elaborate dance of approach and avoidance in this magical, rollicking tale by Cherokee author Thomas King. Alberta is a university professor who would like to trade her two boyfriends for a baby but no husband; Lionel is forty and still sells televisions for a patronizing boss; Eli and his log cabin stand in the way of a profitable dam project. These three—and others—are coming to the Blackfoot reservation for the Sun Dance and there they will encounter four Indian elders and their companion, the trickster Coyote—and nothing in the small town of Blossom will be the same again…  - from

My Thoughts: This book is so much more than the sum of its characters, really.  And its characters are great: Alberta, all full of well-educated, upper-class, urban middle age angst; Lionel, who is settling for a disappointing life and kidding himself that he'll change it all, go back to school, do something new, one day; Eli and his slow contemplation of life and his role in it.  And it's minor characters are great too!  But the real magic in this story is the story-telling done by the four narrators: The Lone Ranger; Robinson Crusoe, Hawkeye and Ishmael with their pesky companion, Coyote.   These are the bits that tie the whole novel together as well as add humor and depth of meaning.  I found these interludes clever, witty and insightful - Thomas King shows us that not only can he have a laugh at himself, but he invites us to join him as we have a laugh at Western civilizations, past and present, too.  And it's awfully hard not to join in!

Certainly not a must-read, but a fun and thoughtful book for fans of Thomas King!

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