The Wampum Keeper
This novel of the war-ravaged People of the Deer takes place in western New York State and Ontario, mid 17th century. While exploring the tragic repercussions of contact with Europeans from a Native American vantage point is commendable, the telling this time is marred by academic asides, and leaden, disjointed, cliché-ridden prose. Even in the midst of combat, warriors stop action to be “seized by memories” of past events or mourn the loss of spirit guardians. Phrases like “with spine-chilling shrieks” and “thanking her lucky stars” abound.