by Drew Hayden Taylor
Ok, just before I post this review I would just like to say -- This is Canadian -- and it is FANTASTIC -- finally a piece of Canadian literature that showcases our sense of humor and doesn't depress the crap out of you! I also would love to chat with this author on how much I loved his book and about his quirky sense of humor -- you must read this just alone for the conversation between Jesus and Nanabush (Trickster). I dare you not to laugh your ass off.
Description: A story of magic, family, a mysterious stranger . . . and a band of marauding raccoons. Otter Lake is a sleepy Anishnawbe community where little happens. Until the day a handsome stranger pulls up astride a 1953 Indian Chief motorcycle – and turns Otter Lake completely upside down. Maggie, the Reserve’s chief, is swept off her feet, but Virgil, her teenage son, is less than enchanted. Suspicious of the stranger’s intentions, he teams up with his uncle Wayne – a master of aboriginal martial arts – to drive the stranger from the Reserve. And it turns out that the raccoons are willing to lend a hand.
- The authors realistic portrayal about life on a reserve in northern ontario. Portrays them like any other Canadian living in a small community. Trust me there are characters like those portrayed in any neighborhood
- Wonderfully realistic and quirky characters.
- Snappy witty dialogue
- Drew pokes fun at his own people, while at the same time dealing with delicate issues such as non-natives attitudes to land clams and the horrific history of Residential schools in a way which is humorous but at the same time doesn't take away from the seriousness of these issues or to point fingers or lay blame
- The conversation between Jesus and Nanabush is worth the price of the book alone
- Made me laugh my ass off on many occasions
- Hopeful story about needing both the past and present and magic and reason.
- Loved his ideas, thoughts and opinions on religion and his portrayal of Jesus is what I sort of hope Jesus would be like - a being with a great sense of humour, compassion and love
- The scenes between Nanabush and the raccoons -- wonderfully unusual and downright laugh your ass off funny.
- The beautiful scene with Nanabush and the chickadee is beautifully written
- The only thing I can come up with that the first couple of chapters are a little confusing on who is who, but it is explained later in the book. You might have to reread the first 2 or 3 chapters
- All sorts of information about the legend of the Trickster in native folklore
- A better understanding and appreciation of native culture
"I read somewhere that most religions have pretty much the same message, they just use different books"
"Wise men and women aren't born wise - wisdom is something achieved over years of experience. And for some, that experience includes -- skinny dipping.
"Some think everything we are is rooted in the past. It is, partially. But like evolution tells us, if things don't develop, change, evolve, adapt, they die"
"John remembered the story of it raining for forty days and forty nights, and wondered if the Ark had started off in Vancouver"
"I think it's called the Bible." "Yeah, needed and editor. No offence, but it went on forever and repeated itself""
Who should read
- Pretty much anyone except for those who are extremely serious or sensative about religion
- Book burners really would not like this - but who cares what they like
- There is some violence and sex so not for the younger reader
Received this book from The New Face of Fiction campaign in return for an honest review