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The Resource Prudence : a novel, David Treuer

Prudence : a novel, David Treuer

Label
Prudence : a novel
Title
Prudence
Title remainder
a novel
Statement of responsibility
David Treuer
Creator
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Storyline
Tone
Writing style
Character
Award
Booklist Editors' Choice, 2015
Review
  • /* Starred Review */ As a boy, Frankie was happiest at the Pines, the old Minnesota resort his Chicago parents acquired and spruced up, dreaming of summer idylls. Felix, the Native American groundskeeper, was a far more benevolent influence on young Frankie than his hostile, selfish father, who never disguised his disappointment in his delicate, thoughtful son. With WWII under way, Princeton student Frankie joins the air force and returns to the Pines before going overseas, anxious to see his secret love, Billy, a “half-breed.” But a camp for German POWs has been hastily erected across the river, a prisoner escapes, and, desperate to assert his manliness, Frankie finds himself at the center of a tragedy involving a young, dispossessed, and rebellious Native American woman named, or rather, misnamed, Prudence. Finding solace in military orderliness, Frankie thinks, “If only life had a similar clarity.” Clearness and precision are what Ojibwa writer Treuer (The Translation of Dr Apelles, 2006) so evocatively attains in this magnetizing and richly original novel. As he cycles in and out of his extraordinarily affecting characters’ lives of deprivation and stoicism, he elucidates stygian emotions and annihilating psychological traumas incited by brutal, even genocidal conflicts over sexuality, race, and religion. Treuer’s trenchant and compassionate novel glimmers with nature’s potent beauty, fresh historical detail, and scrupulous insight. -- Seaman, Donna (Reviewed 01-01-2015) (Booklist, vol 111, number 9, p53)
  • After 2012’s much-lauded examination of Native American life on the reservation (Rez Life ), Ojibwe writer Treuer turns once again to fiction in his achingly moving fourth novel. Here, he uses flashbacks and myriad points of view to relay both the lead-up to and the aftermath of a shocking event that occurs one muggy summer night in 1942. In the search to hunt down an escaped German prisoner from a WWII POW camp, a nine-year-old Indian girl is mistakenly shot and killed in the woods abutting the Pines, the rural Minnesota summer estate belonging to the Washburns. Though her older sister Prudence emerges unscathed, the accident alters the fates of everyone involved, including vulnerable Frankie Washburn, who pulled the trigger; Billy, the Indian boy who’s secretly captured Frankie’s heart and who takes the blame for the shooting; Felix, the stoic Indian widower who works on the Washburns’ property and takes Prudence in after her sister’s burial; and mouthy Prudence, who drinks and fornicates her way through the pain. Treuer adds depth to each of the characters’ stories by revealing tidbits of backstory, but it’s the saga of Frankie and Billy’s thwarted love and the consequences of their actions that feels the most devastating and resonant, haunting both men as they’re shipped off to war. Perhaps most fitting is the book’s title—which speaks volumes about each character’s integrity, culpability, and resilience in the face of a collective tragedy. (Feb.) --Staff (Reviewed December 15, 2014) (Publishers Weekly, vol 261, issue 52, p)
  • Set in northern Minnesota mostly during and right after World War II, this thoughtful and engaging novel by Treuer (The Translation of Dr. Apelles ) reveals the different worlds inhabited by whites and Native Americans in the area. Dr. Washburn and his wife own a small resort on the edge of a lake, where a Native American veteran of World War I named Felix works year-round as handyman. The Washburns' son, Frankie, is about to go off to war himself and is meeting his parents and friends on the lake for a farewell celebration. When a German POW escapes from a nearby camp, Frankie and some friends join in on the search, firing upon a noise in the brush and tragically killing one of two fugitive Native American girls hiding there. The novel then follows the fates of Frankie, as he flies bombers over Europe, and Prudence, the survivor of the shooting incident, who is adopted by Felix; after the war, a stranger arrives in town and brings more tragedy in his wake. VERDICT In a well-told tale with realistically portrayed characters and locations, the author sustains a voice that is low-key but forceful, managing narrative and theme, action and thought in ways that elevate this story to a powerful level. [See Prepub Alert, 8/22/14.]— James Coan, SUNY at Oneonta Lib. --James Coan (Reviewed December 1, 2014) (Library Journal, vol 139, issue 20, p97)
  • Novelist/memoirist Treuer (Rez Life, 2012, etc.) returns to the northern woodlands with this understated study of cultures in conflict.On the surface a murder mystery, Treuer's latest captures rural Minnesota life in a time of transformation. World War II has erupted, sweeping up a generation of young men to go fight; one of them is Frankie Washburn, a child of relative privilege, who is sent off to battle in the skies over Europe. The book begins, however, with a brief prologue set a decade later; there's the arrival of a mysterious Jew—"and no one had seen a Jew on the reservation before"—and the apparently simultaneous death of the title character, a Native American woman whose life is so hard that death must have come as a release. The framing device of that nameless Jew seems odd, since his presence is largely unexplained, but it adds to the sense of impenetrable mystery that surrounds subsequent events. More than one death figures in them, including the sad and memorable dispatch of a "brush wolf," as does the tumult surrounding the escape of a German submariner from a prison camp nearby. Treuer nicely complicates his storyline by shifting points of view among the principal characters, turning in a kind of Spoon River Anthology of stepping beyond the norms: Here is the love that dare not speak its name and that will kill to hold its silence, there, guilt over killings committed in the name of nations, there the discovery that a presumably guilty man is innocent—almost, anyway—and the roiling, always, of conflicts of generation, class and ethnicity: "Nothing else came to him and he thought, for a moment, how stupid it must sound to the white people behind him." A self-assured, absorbing story with a grim arc that moves from bad to worse as Treuer explores the darkness at our cores.(Kirkus Reviews, December 1, 2014)
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
10395855
Cataloging source
DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Treuer, David
Dewey number
813/.54
Index
no index present
LC call number
PS3570.R435
LC item number
P78 2015
Literary form
fiction
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • World War, 1939-1945
  • Families
  • Leech Lake Indian Reservation (Minn.)
Label
Prudence : a novel, David Treuer
Instantiates
Publication
Note
Subtitle from jacket
Carrier category
volume
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Control code
1063617
Dimensions
24 cm
Extent
x, 253 pages
Isbn
9781594633089
Isbn Type
(hbk.)
Lccn
2014028541
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
System control number
(Sirsi) i9781594633089
Label
Prudence : a novel, David Treuer
Publication
Note
Subtitle from jacket
Carrier category
volume
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Control code
1063617
Dimensions
24 cm
Extent
x, 253 pages
Isbn
9781594633089
Isbn Type
(hbk.)
Lccn
2014028541
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
System control number
(Sirsi) i9781594633089

Library Locations

    • Central LibraryBorrow it
      710 W. Cesar Chavez St, Austin, TX, 78701, US
      30.2713021 -97.7460168
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      651 N. Pleasant Valley Rd., Austin, TX, 78702, US
      30.2590471 -97.7088905
    • Windsor Park BranchBorrow it
      5833 Westminster Dr., Austin, TX, 78723, US
      30.3116523 -97.6902298
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