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D most of all love Her face and *my father s face were naked with love It wasn t something that we talked about love and *father s face were naked with love It wasn t something that we talked about love and was terrified of its expression from the lips of my parents But they allowed me this one clear look at it Their love blazed from them And then they left I think now that everything that was concentrated in that one look their care
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raising me patient lessons in every subject they knew to teach their wincing efforts to give me freedoms their example of fortitude in work allowed me to survive myself Evelina p 222The entire Evelina section from her Anais Nin obsession to her bad poetry to her descent into her own hell and rise out of it stands alone and shines shines shines with pain and longing growth and survival even triumph Sometimes often Erdrich leads you down a paragraph or chapter and then concludes wham with a milestone plot point someone died came or left endured or was destroyed that has its impact rooted in the surprise of its inevitabilityShe doesn t make you feel angry at not seeing it coming she ust leaves you in awe that she got you there so subtly and cleverly And then she gifts you with this insight that has about 12 million layers of meaning and resonance with the story the other characters and your own life Because "she s a poet and poetry does thatI love herI m so glad she s written so many books "s a poet and poetry does thatI love herI m so glad she s written so many books I can savour them in turn without the anxiety of soon running out Although these are definitely books that bear and deserve re reading We open with a scene of mass murder A child Moses Kal El is spared when the killer s weapon ams He uiets the baby with music Violence and music permeate the following tales and only at the very end do we learn who the baby grew up to be and the identity of the killer There are other atrocities to come How these events came to be and the ongoing impact of time and transformation define this bookMultiple narrators multiple generations much overlap between Native Americans and European settlers This is apparently typical of her work I began my character catalog by dividing between Native and European but it became clear in time that there was too much intermarriage for that to be truly meaningful I suppose one could add a mixed blood section but then what about uatroons et al One narrator Evelina relates the stories told by her grandfather Seraph Milk also known as Mooshum There are many to be told In one striking scene set in 1896 masses of passenger pigeons S understands the weight of historical injustice better than anyone Through the distinct and winning voices of three unforgettable narrators the collective stories of two interwoven communities ultimately come together to reveal a final wrenching tru.

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Louise Erdrich is a talented writer and I ve enjoyed several of her other books So my expectations are high The format of this is something we ve seen from her too many times already it s time to experiment with something newThe weaving of characters stories is interesting but not on par with the Painted Drum or what her former husband Michael Dorris did in Yellow Raft on Blue Waters The plot has so much potential and the writing is so compelling that it was disappointing that it didn t come "together dramatic This is the first novel I ve read set " dramatic This is the first novel I ve read set a twentieth century setting about French and American Indian descendants and the prejudices with which they ve had to live It has a fascinating and meandering plot with interesting characters peppered throughout Ultimately it s a who done it For me the ending was a tad of a letdown because you find out who but you don t find out why Interweaves the oral history 1st person narratives of the members of a N Dakota town reservation to look at the aftermath effects of an isolated murder of a white family and subseuent lynching of several innocent Indians I couldn t read this in one sitting so I was finding myself having a hard time keeping all of the different threads and families straight There seemed to be so many that by the end when a new one started I couldn t help thinking yikes when is she is going to pull all of this together She does but I was still left scratching my head on a few things Several of the storylines are incredible Marn Wolde s Evelina Harp s were my favorites but some of the others weren t compelling enough for me to really love the book as a whole Can I keep giving all the books I read this year four or five stars Is my udgement becoming less and less credible assuming it had any credibility in the first place May I ust say that it s all Goodreads fault and the many Goodreaders you know who you are who ve led me to these authors and books that so precisely fulfill my every literary desire I m getting ruthless at picking and choosing among my to read pile going only for those I know will satisfy me the responsibility for which must be *Laid Again Firmly At *again firmly at feet of Goodreads and Goodreaders So there if you are getting fewer reviews and these meaningless and unvarying 4 and 5 star ratings from me you have only yourself to blame And I am too busy reading 4 and 5 star books to pay much attention or careREVIEWThe Plague of Doves reads like a connected set of short The unsolved murder of a farm family still haunts the white small town of Pluto North Dakota generations after the vengeance exacted and the distortions of fact transformed the lives of Ojibwe living on the nearby reservationPart Ojibwe part white Ev. ,
The Plague of DovesTories which as I found out in the end notes is what it started out as While there was a loose narrative strand woven like a straw through these vignettes a shocking event in the prologue unravelled by the final chapter that is not why you should read this if you haven t
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it s Erdrich s poetic penetrating raw insights They left me breathless They have both edge and lyricism in them They are gritty spare and harsh while also infused with an ethereal magical reality eg I had expected to feel oy but instead felt a confusion of sorrow or maybe fear for it seemed that my life was a hungry Story And I Its Source and I its source with this kiss I had now begun to deliver myself into the words Evelina p 20and unexpected and prevalent a razor sharp black humour eg Mama said so and when we fought she shut us up by saying Just imagine how you d feel if something happened Imagining the other dead helped us enjoy each other s company Evelina p 28The entire exchange between Joseph Evelina s father and Mooshum starting with Is your sister fond of flowers What is her favorite Stinging nettles What were her charming habits when she was young She could fart the national anthem She s got her teeth no All of them Except the ones she left in her husbands p 35Spirituality is treated with the complexity it deserves eg the incredibly touching scenes between Evelina and Sister Mary Anita and the way she describes how Shamengwa and Mooshum goad Father CassidyAnd lines snippets of dialogue fleeting imagery that seem tossed off but are deceptively important Erdrich like any poet is deliberate in her descriptions My uncle Warren who would stare and stare at you like he was watching your blood move and your food digest Marn Wolde p 139 Looking into my father s eyes you would see the knowledge tender and offhand of the ways roots took hold in the earth p 139 How she deals with madness and *sadness the entire marn wolde section but especially *the entire Marn Wolde section but especially s descriptions of how and why she dissociates The words are inside and outside of me hanging in the air like small pottery triangles broken and curved chokengistitikchokeng 145 all of p 146 spectacular haunting imagery The music The violin how it unites and divides a family how it cures and kills That I must play was important to me than my father s pain It was a uestion of survival after all If I had not found the music I would have died of the silence Shamengwa p 203Music and stories magic and madness brutality and guilt an. Elina Harp is an ambitious young girl prone to falling hopelessly in love Mooshum Evelina's grandfather is a repository of family and tribal history with an all too intimate knowledge of the violent past And Judge Antone Bazil Coutts who bears witnes.