When sixteen-year-old Franklin Starlight is summoned by his ailing father, Eldon, Franklin’s sense of duty clashes with the deep resentment he feels for his father’s many years of absence, neglect, and drinking. Still, he agrees to his father’s final wish to be buried in the warrior way, deep in the rugged backcountry of British Columbia. The two men set out together on one last journey, as Eldon offers his son an inheritance Franklin never could have imagined—slowly revealing his life’s hardships, joys, and sustaining hopes.
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Praise and Prizes
“Less written than painstakingly etched into something more permanent than paper . . . Richard Wagamese bides his time, never rushing, calibrating each word so carefully that he never seems to waste a shot. . . . Though death saturates these pages, not a word here is lugubrious. Though revelations abound, there are no cheap surprises. . . . There’s nothing plain about this plain-spoken book.”
"A slim, beautiful, heart-wrenching novel . . . Richard Wagamese is a marvelous writer, and this is a treasure of a book."
“Richard Wagamese has become a master. This brilliant novel is his heart song, his crowning achievement thus far.”
“A complex, rugged, and moving father-son novel . . . Richard Wagamese’s muscular prose and spare tone complement this gem of a narrative.”
“A deeply felt and profoundly moving novel, written in the kind of sure, clear prose that brings to mind the work of the great North American masters, Steinbeck among them. But Richard Wagamese’s voice and vision are also completely his own, as is the important and powerful story he has to tell.”
“Richard Wagamese is a keen observer, sketching places or people elegantly, economically, all while gracefully employing literary insight to deftly dissect blood ties lingering in fractured families. . . . A powerful novel of hard men in hard country, reminiscent of Jim Harrison’s Legends of the Fall.”