We walk through the snow, follow our trail out to the traplines by the willows.
Usually I take my time between reading books by the same author, especially when the themes are similar. But if someone offers you the book you want to read.. why not? So Boyden and a story of the First Nations People, again.
This time it’s the Great War, World War One. The reader doesn’t only get the terrors of massacre and destruction, but also the alienated experience of being the other, only allowed around because it’s necessary. War is a beast that doesn’t mind who its fed on, after all.
It’s Nephew’s story, on and off the battlefields, before and after. It’s Auntie’s/Niska’s story, a woman alien within her own. Stories are what bind them, stories, beautiful and brutal, are what the reader gets.
The person told me that Boyden’s other work was better, was right. There’s no room for air or boredom in Three Day Road, repetition prevented by devolution and destruction of characters and land.
I’m really going to leave Boyden be for now, but I’m glad that I gave him a second chance.
Three Day Road, Joseph Boyden, Penguin Books 2005