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Louise Erdrich is the author of twelve novels as well as volumes of poetry, children's books, and a memoir of early motherhood. Her debut novel, Love Medicine, won the National Book Critics Circle Award. The Last Report on the Miracles at Little No Horse was a finalist for the National Book Award. Her most recent novel, The Plague of Doves was a New York Times bestseller. Louise Erdrich lives in Minnesota with her daughters and is the owner of Birchbark Books, a small independent bookstore.
Author photo © Paul Emmell
One of our Books of the Year 2013. Hailed in the US as a Native American To Kill A Mockingbird and winner of the 2012 US National Book Award, this is a masterclass in compelling, emotional and magical storytelling. After an horrific rape Joe’s mother shuts herself away and even though his father is a tribal judge he is unable to uncover the culprit. Frustrated, Joe sets our with his best friends to find the truth. This literary mystery, full of stunning language will have a lasting impression on any reader. October 2013 Book of the Month. In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion for The Round House a small number of Lovereading members were lucky enough to be invited to review this title - 'Read this book! The Round House is an incredible, rewarding and emotional whirlwind of a read' - Phyl Smithson. Scroll down to read more reviews.
May 2013 Book of the Month. Hailed in the US as a Native American To Kill A Mockingbird and winner of the 2012 US National Book Award, this is a masterclass in compelling, emotional and magical storytelling. After an horrific rape Joe’s mother shuts herself away and even though his father is a tribal judge he is unable to uncover the culprit. Frustrated, Joe sets our with his best friends to find the truth. This literary mystery, full of stunning language will have a lasting impression on any reader. In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion for The Round House a small number of Lovereading members were lucky enough to be invited to review this title - 'Read this book! The Round House is an incredible, rewarding and emotional whirlwind of a read' - Phyl Smithson. Scroll down to read more reviews.
A stunning novel that explores the things that can complicate revenge - like falling for the man you hate - from the winner of the National Book Award for Fiction 2012 Seeking revenge on the lumber baron who has stripped her reservation, Fleur Pillager takes her mother's name, Four Souls, for strength and walks from her Ojibwe reservation to the cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul. But revenge is never simple, and she quickly finds her intentions complicated by her own dangerous compassion for the man who wronged her. The two narrators of `Four Souls' are from utterly different worlds. Nanapush, a `smart man and a fool', is both Fleur's saviour and her conscience. Elderly, he would like to face death with his love Margaret beside him. Instead, the two find themselves battling out their last years. When Nanapush's childhood nemesis appears and casts his eye toward Margaret, Nanapush acts out an absurd revenge of his own. The other narrator, Polly Elizabeth Gheen, is a hanger-on in a wealthy Minneapolis family, a woman aware of her precarious hold on those around her. To her own great surprise the entrance of Fleur Pillager into her household and her life effects a transformation she could never have predicted.
From the winner of the National Book Award for Fiction, 2012 comes this elegantly crafted novel that explores the strange power that lost children exert on the memories of those they leave behind When Faye Travers is sent to appraise a family estate in a small New Hampshire town and comes across a forgotten set of valuable Native American artefacts, she is not surprised by the discovery. However, she is shocked when she finds a rare drum - particularly because without even touching the instrument she hears its deep resonant sound. Following the discovery, we trace the drum's passage both backwards and forwards in time. We hear the voice of Bernard Shaawano, an Ojibwe, who tells of how his grandfather created the drum after years of mourning his younger daughter's death and how it changes the paths of those who cross it. Through Faye, we experience her anguished relationship with a local sculptor who also mourns the loss of a daughter, and witness the life Faye has made alone with her mother, in the shadow of her sister's death. Erdich poetically captures the intricate, transformative rhythms of human grief that these losses create within her characters with grace, wit, captivating prose and surprising beauty.
Her name is Omakayas, or Little Frog, because her first step was a hop, and she lives on an island in Lake Superior.It is 1850 and the lives of the Ojibwe have returned to a familiar rhythm: they build their birchbark houses in the summer, go to the ricing camps in the fall to harvest and feast, and move to their cozy cedar log cabins near the town of LaPointe before the first snows.The satisfying routines of Omakayas's days are interrupted by a surprise visit from a group of desperate and mysterious people. From them, she learns that all their lives may drastically change. The chimookomanag, or white people, want Omakayas and her people to leave their island in Lake Superior and move farther west. Omakayas realizes that something so valuable, so important that she never knew she had it in the first place, is in danger: Her home. Her way of life.In this captivating sequel to National Book Award nominee The Birchbark House, Louise Erdrich continues the story of Omakayas and her family.Performed by Anna Fields
A New York Times Notable BookFor more than a half century, Father Damien Modeste has served his beloved Native American tribe, the Ojibwe, on the remote reservation of Little No Horse. Now, nearing the end of his life, Father Damien dreads the discovery of his physical identity, for he is a woman who has lived as a man. To further complicate his quiet existence, a troubled colleague comes to the reservation to investigate the life of the perplexing, possibly false saint Sister Leopolda. Father Damien alone knows the strange truth of Leopolda's piety, but these facts are bound up in his own secret. He is faced with the most difficult decision: Should he tell all and risk everything . . . or manufacture a protective history for Leopolda, though he believes her wonder-working is motivated solely by evil?In a masterwork that both deepens and enlarges the world of her previous novels set on the same reservation, Louise Erdrich captures the essence of a time and the spirit of a woman who felt compelled by her beliefs to serve her people as a priest. The Last Report on the Miracles at Little No Horse is a work of an avid heart, a writer's writer, and a storytelling genius.
Having survived World War I, Fidelis Waldvogel returns to his quiet German village and marries the pregnant widow of his best friend, killed in action. With a suitcase full of sausages and a master butchers precious knife set, Fidelis sets out for America. In Argus, North Dakota, he builds a business, a home for his familywhich includes Eva and four sonsand a singing club consisting of the best voices in town. When the Old World meets the Newin the person of Delphine Watzkathe great adventure of Fideliss life begins. Delphine meets Eva and is enchanted. She meets Fidelis, and the ground trembles. These momentous encounters will determine the course of Delphines life, and the trajectory of this brilliant novel.
A fiercely imagined tale of love and loss, a story that manages to transform tragedy into comic redemption, sorrow into heroic survival.New York Times [A] beguiling family saga.A captivating jigsaw puzzle of longing and loss whose pieces form an unforgettable image of contemporary Native American life.PeopleA New York Times bestselling author, a Pulitzer Prize finalist, and winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award, Louise Erdrich is an acclaimed chronicler of life and love, mystery and magic within the Native American community. A hauntingly beautiful story of a mysterious woman who enters the lives of two families and changes them forever, Erdrichs classic novel, The Antelope Wife, has enthralled readers for more than a decade with its powerful themes of fate and ancestry, tragedy and salvation. Now the acclaimed author of Shadow Tag and The Plague of Doves has radically revised this already masterful work, adding a new richness to the characters and story while bringing its major themes into sharper focus, as it ingeniously illuminates the effect of history on families and cultures, Ojibwe and white.
A powerful novel from one of the most celebrated American writers of her generation, and the winner of the National Book Award for Fiction 2012 In the quiet aftermath of WWI, Fidelis Waldvogel leaves behind his quiet German village, and sets out for America with his new wife Eva - the widow of his best friend, killed in action. Finally settling in North Dakota, Fidelis works hard to build a business, a home for his family - and a singing club consisting of the best voices in town. But his adventure into the New World truly begins when he encounters Delphine Watzka, a local woman whose origins are a mystery, even to her. Delphine meets Eva and is enchanted. She meets Fidelis and the ground trembles... Spanning the decades from the Great War to the fifties, 'The Master Butchers Singing Club' is a gift to readers everywhere, unfolding its themes of love and death, lightness and gravity with the eloquent prose, sly humour, and depth of feeling that only a masterful writer can offer.
Past and present combine in a contemporary tale of love and betrayal from Louise Erdrich, winner of the National Book Award for Fiction, 2012 'Everything is all knotted up in a tangle. Pull one string of this family and the whole web will tremble.' Rozin and Richard, living in Minneapolis with their two young daughters, seem a long way from the traditions of their Native American ancestors. But when one of their acquaintances kidnaps a strange and silent young woman from a Native American camp and brings her back to live with him as his wife, the connections they all hold to the past rear up to confront them. Soon the patterns of their ancestors begin to repeat themselves with truly tragic consequences. No one is better placed than Louise Erdrich to chronicle the Native American experience. Shrouded in myth and steeped in imagery, this is also a tale of heartbreaking realism which manages to retain a warm and irrepressible humour and belief in the resilience of the human spirit.
Native American students entering college often experience a dramatic confrontation of cultures. As one of the writers in this remarkable collective memoir remarks, When I was a child, I was taught certain things: don't stand up to your elders; don't question authority; life is precious; the earth is precious; take it slowly; enjoy it. And then you go to college and you learn all these other things that never fit. Making things fit, finding that elusive balance between tribal values and the demands of campus life is a recurring theme in this landmark collection of personal essays. Navajo or Choctaw, Tlingit or Sioux, each of the essayists (all graduates of Dartmouth College) gives a heartfelt account of struggle and adjustment. The result is a compelling portrait of the anguish Native American students feel justifying the existence of their own cultures not only to other students but also throughout the predominantly white institutions they have joined. Among the contributors are a tribal court judge and a professional baseball player, the first Navajo woman surgeon, and the former executive director of a Native American preparatory school. Their memories and insights are unparalleled.
An exhilarating and enchanting meditation on becoming a mother from one of America's most acclaimed writers, and winner of the National Book Award for Fiction, 2012. `She is a winter-spring baby, and all day there is just her, me, snow and the birds outside.' A mother for all seasons, Erdrich tracks the end of her pregnancy into the dazzling light of childbirth and beyond into her baby's infancy, keeping a weather-eye on Nature outside her window and inside her body, gauging its lessons and constraints. She spills over with the intense feeling a baby carries into being as its gift to its mother. But her book is no mystical trip; Erdrich is umbilically attached to the earth, and to common sense. All prospective and seasoned parents will cherish her report from the frontline, for she never lectures, she simply strives to record exactly - in language both supple and ripe. Moving and memorable, neither handbook nor tract, here, for perhaps the first time, is mothering converted into writing without fakery.
A reissue of a much-loved classic, from one of America's most celebrated novelists, winner of the prestigious National Book Award for Fiction in 2012. Seeking direction and enlightenment, Lipsha Morrissey, a charismatic young drifter, answers his grandmother's summons to return to his birthplace. As he tries to settle into a challenging new job on the reservation, he falls passionately in love for the first time. But the object of his desire, the beautiful Shawnee Ray, is in the midst of deciding whether to marry his boss, the wealthy reservation entrepreneur, Lyman Lamartine. Matters are further complicated when Lipsha discovers that Lyman is his rival in more ways than one. In league with an influential group of aggressive businessmen, Lyman has chosen to open a gambling complex on reservation land - a development which threatens to destroy the community's fundamental links with the past...
A beautifully repackaged reissue of the magical novel from Louise Erdrich, winner of America's prestigious National Book Award for Fiction in 2012. On a cold spring morning in 1932, two children, Karl and Mary Adare, leap from a boxcar. Orphaned in a most peculiar way, Karl and Mary have come to Argus, in the heart of rural North Dakota, to seek refuge with their aunt Fritzie. So begins an exhilarating tale, spanning some forty years and brimming with unforgettable characters: ordinary Mary, who causes a miracle; seductive, restless Karl, who lacks his sister's gift for survival; Celestine James, Mary's life-long friend; and Celestine's fearless, wild daughter Dot - the Beet Queen.
Beautiful reissue of Louise Erdrich's most famous novel, from one of the most celebrated American writers of her generation and winner of the National Book Award 2012. Set on and around a North Dakota reservation, `Love Medicine' tells the story of the Lamartines and the Kashpaws - two extraordinary families whose fates are united and sustained in a harsh world by the strength and diversity of their love. We meet the sensual Lulu Lamartine, whose children have different fathers, but whose passionate tie to her first love, Nector Kashpaw, intensifies over the years; June Kashpaw, who froze to death in a snowstorm; and the philosophical Lipsha Morrissey, June's abandoned son, who makes a love medicine to keep his grandparents together. Greeted with great critical acclaim when first published in 1984, 'Love Medicine' won the US National Book Critics' Circle Award. Louise Erdrich has now substantially revised and expanded the novel for this edition, to complement its companion novels, 'The Beet Queen, `Tracks' and 'The Bingo Palace'.
Louise Erdrich and Michael Dorris, the most prominent writers of Native American descent, collaborate on all their works. In these interviews, conducted both separately and jointly, they discuss how their writing moves from conception to completion and how The Beet Queen, Tracks, A Yellow Raft in Blue Water, and The Crown of Columbus have been enhanced by both their artistic and their matrimonial union. Being of mixed blood and having lived in both white and Native American worlds, they give an original perspective on American society. Sometimes with humor and always with refreshing candor, their discussions undermine the damaging stereotypes of Native Americans. Some of the interviews focus on their nonfiction book, The Broken Cord, which recounts the struggle to solve their adopted son's health problems from fetal alcohol syndrome. Included are two recent interviews published here for the first time. In this collection, Erdrich and Dorris tell why they have chosen to write about many varying subjects and of why they refuse to be imprisoned in a literary ghetto of writers whose only subjects are Native Americans.
A novel from Michael Dorris and Louise Erdrich, winner of America's prestigious National Book Award for Fiction, 2012. Charlie Trumper's earliest memory is of hearing his grandfather's sales patter from behind his costermonger's barrow. When Grandpa Charlie dies, young Charlie wants nothing more than to follow in his footsteps - his burning ambition is to own a shop that will sell everything: 'The Biggest Barrow in the World'. Charlie's progress from the teeming streets of Whitechapel to the elegance of Chelsea Terrace is only a few miles 'as the crow flies'. But in Jeffrey Archer's expert hands it becomes an epic journey through the triumphs and disasters of the century, as Charlie follows a thread of love, ambition and revenge to fulfil the dream his grandfather inspired.