The idea of this blog is to facilitate the love of reading by collecting news about new books, or sometimes good old books. It is also dedicated to stamping out the scourge of e-books, Kindles, Kobo's, i-Pads, and all other such abominations.

Monday, January 08, 2007

The Friends of Meager Fortune by David Adams Richards

What a remarkable read this is. THE FRIENDS OF MEAGER FORTUNE, by David Adams Richards is written in almost biblical form and shares many of the elements of other Adams stories. He understands the poverty-stricken souls of small, insulated communities. The characters in THE FRIENDS OF MEAGER FORTUNE are larger than life loggers, working in New Brunswick in the first part of the 20th century. I am not a "horse person" but I was awed by Adams descriptions of horse logging on one of the most dangerous mountains in New Brunswick at a time when teamsters drove great black Perchons, Clydesdales and teh Belgians, small, tough draft horses. In this novel, the loggers, the teamsters and the horses do the impossible.

The Jamesons, Will, the older son who is well-suited to the world of logging and is now as the "great Will Jameson" dies suddenly at a very young age. His younger brother, Owen, bookish, not meant for logging, returns from World War II, with an injury, and must take over the business. A prophecy made at the time of Will's birth drives the story.

In a novel of less than admirable characters, Meager Fortune stands as a force for good, caring for all.
One of the great gifts of this book is the depiction of logging. Canadaa's strength and wealth has come from our natural resources. Richards brings to life the heroic work performed by flawed souls.

Pettiness, waywardness, betrayal, selfless caring and a doomed love story. You'll find it all in this magnificent novel.


Anonymous zoroastrian2 said...

Loggers, Thora? I hope DAR makes it clear that these "heroes" were heroically destroying the lungs of the earth! It is not enough just to admire these muscle-heads for their mighty work. If we are to have a future on this planet we must identify the cause of our trouble, even if it means unmasking former folk heroes and unthinking destroyers of life. We can't go on embracing comfortable old myths when global survival depends on forging a new consciousness that rejects the role played by unthinking soldiers of the industrial army and replaces it with new, true pioneers like David Suzuki and Monty Hummel who have pioneered a new earth-friendly consciousness.

11:38 AM  
Blogger bookmaven said...

I found this to be a marvelous portrayal of a part of Canadian history. I think perhaps you should read the book and you will find that you and the author are not that far apart in your thinking.

2:57 PM  

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