My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Louise Erdrich is a writer I am grateful for and I will simply list the ways she enriches my reading and writing life: great emotional intelligence, big sweeping symphonic American history, native American tragedy and comedy in pitch perfect notes, and her women are flawed and wonderful and wicked and unforgettable, her men are sweet and wounded and miserable and fabulous, children are tough and resilient and damaged and lovable, every animal has a presence and trots across the pages with a purpose, small towns are presented as they absolutely are with everyone knowing or inventing everyone else's life stories, the vagaries of the weather are present every day, as they are in real life but not in airless urban novels. In her books, like this masterpiece, we taste and smell and feel and worry and cheer for her food and her people and all of the rich feast she sets out for us with every book.
Because she is a poet, her language is varied and interesting and my inner ear tracks the flow of every character's "voice print" without losing track even once of who is speaking or dreaming.
As a writer, I alternate between wanting to just read wonderful books to escape the hard work of writing or to be inspired by fine minds like this author's, to get busy on my own manuscript underway. Happily, I can manage both.
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