Author(s): Joseph Boyden
Fifteen years after the death of their patriarch Xavier, the Bird Clan finds itself struggling to survive on the hardscrabble reservation they call home. On Christmas Day, the youngest of the clan, a beautiful young woman called Suzanne leaves by snowmobile with her boyfriend Gus Netmaker, against both families' wishes, hoping to find purpose and a better life in Toronto. When word from Suzanne and Gus suddenly ceases, the Netmakers and Birds fear the worst and tensions between the two families escalate to violent levels. Suzanne's sister Annie, a loner and a hunter, decides to leave home for the very first time to search for them, leaving behind their uncle Will, a man haunted by loss. While Annie travels from Toronto to New York, from modeling studios to A-list parties, Will encounters dire troubles at home. Both eventually come to painful discoveries about the inescapable ties of family. THROUGH BLACK SPRUCE paints aboriginal life in a contemporary world, full of the dangers, desperation and harsh beauty of both the forest and the city. It's an utterly unforgettable consideration of the search for identity and the strength of family love.
Fascinating portrait of the contemporary world versus the traditional American Indian world. Great for reading groups - a word of mouth book Joseph Boyden's first novel, Three Day Road was shortlisted for major Canadian prizes and was a top ten bestseller in their charts. It received this praise: "A beautifully written and haunting story of survival and innocence shattered, of friendship, death, redemption and love of the land. The three protagonists, Xavier, Elijah and Niska will be in my heart forever. Please, please don't miss it!" Isabel Allende
Joseph Boyden is a Canadian with Irish, Scottish, and Metis roots. His first novel, THREE DAY ROAD, has been published in ten languages. It was shortlisted for the Governor Generals Award for Fiction. He divides his time between Northern Ontario and Louisiana, where he teaches writing at the University of New Orleans.