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LaRose

Louise Erdrich

7 Reviews

Rated 0

Fiction, Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)

Set at the end of the last century, the novel follows the fate of LaRose, a young boy, whose life is transformed when his father shoots and kills a neighbour's son whilst hunting deer LAROSE explores justice, retribution, and the reparation of the human heart. An unforgettable, dazzling tour de force from one of America's foremost literary talents.

Late summer in North Dakota, 1999: Landreaux Iron stalks a deer along the edge of the property bordering his own. He shoots with easy confidence but only when he staggers closer does he realise he has killed his neighbour's son.

Dusty Ravich, the deceased boy, was best friends with Landreaux's five-year-old son, LaRose. The two families have been close for years and their children played together despite going to different schools. Landreaux is horrified at what he's done; fighting off his longstanding alcoholism, he ensconces himself in a sweat lodge and prays for guidance. And there he discovers an old way of delivering justice for the wrong he's done. The next day he and his wife Emmaline deliver LaRose to the bereaved Ravich parents. Standing on the threshold of the Ravich home, they say, 'Our son will be your son now'.

LaRose is quickly absorbed into his new family. Gradually he's allowed visits with his birth family, whose grief for the son and brother they gave away mirrors that of the Raviches. The years pass and LaRose becomes the linchpin that links both families. As the Irons and the Raviches grow ever more entwined, their pain begins to subside. But when a man who nurses a grudge against Landreaux fixates on the idea that there was a cover-up the day Landreaux killed Dusty - and decides to expose this secret - he threatens the fragile peace between the two families...

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Praise for LaRose

  • Confirms her reputation as a writer able to combine the apocalyptic with the mundane world whose inhabitants are set loo

  • Erdrich is brilliant at using dialogue to capture the teenage psyche....The parallels with To Kill a Mockingbird are obvious, but it is the soundtrack to Rob Reiner's classic coming-of-age film Stand by Me that spooled through my mind as I followed Joe and his mates through their long, hot, life-changing summer - The Economist on The Round House

  • Erdrich has achieved an impressive trick; a spellbinding read, an earnest message and fierce emotional punch - Sunday Telegraph on The Round House

  • A compelling coming-of-age story ... [Erdrich] is a gifted storyteller who brings all these characters and tales together with sureness and grace - Independent on The Round House

  • A masterly new novel ... Writing in prose that combines the magical sleight of hand of Gabriel Garcia Marquez with the earthy, American rhythms of Faulkner, Ms. Erdrich ... has written what is arguably her most ambitious - and in many ways, her most deeply affecting - work yet - Michiko Kakutani, New York Times on The Plague of Doves

  • Louise Erdrich is the most interesting American novelist to have appeared in years - Philip Roth

  • Louise Erdrich's imaginative freedom has reached its zenith - The Plague of Doves is her dazzling masterpiece. - Philip Roth on The Plague of Doves

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Louise Erdrich

Louise Erdrich is the author of fifteen novels as well as volumes of poetry, children's books, short stories, and a memoir of early motherhood. Her novel The Round House won the National Book Award for Fiction. The Plague of Doves won the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, and her debut novel, Love Medicine, was the winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award. Erdrich has received the Library of Congress Prize in American Fiction, the prestigious PEN/Saul Bellow Award for Achievement in American Fiction, and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize. She lives in Minnesota with her daughters and is the owner of Birchbark Books, a small independent bookstore.