Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The Antelope Wife

I felt disoriented by Louise Erdrich's The Antelope Wife. There were points at which I felt a real connection to this book and points at which I just rolled my eyes.

It won the World Fantasy Award in 1999.

from the back of the book:
The Antelope Wife extends the branches of the families who populate Louise Erdrich's earlier novels, and once again, her unsentimental, unsparing writing captures the Native American sense of despair, magic, and humor. Rooted in myth and set in contemporary Minneapolis, this poetic and haunting story spans a century, at the center of which is a mysterious and graceful woman known as the Antelope Wife. Elusive, silent, and bearing a mystical link to nature, she embodies a complicated quest for love and survival that impacts lives in unpredictable ways. Her tale is an unpredictable ways. Her tale is an unforgettable tapestry of ancestry, fate, harrowing tragedy, and redemption, that seems at once modern and eternal.

I don't find her writing "unsentimental" at all, and I certainly wouldn't describe it as "unsparing". I think she loses clarity in the flourishes. I've read her Love Medicine and The Last Report on the Miracles at Little No Horse, and I like The Antelope Wife least of these 3.

There's a reading group guide here.

The NY Times here and here

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