By Rudy Wiebe
A Discovery of Strangers tells of the assembly of 2 civilizations – the 1st stumble upon of the nomadic Dene individuals with Europeans – in an imaginitive reconstruction of John Franklin’s first map-making excursion in 1819—21 in what's now the Northwest Territories. on the middle of the unconventional is a love tale among twenty-two-year-old midshipman Robert Hood, the Franklin expedition’s artist, and a fifteen-year-old Yellowknife lady identified to the British as Greenstockings. a countrywide bestseller, released additionally in Germany and China, Wiebe’s first novel in 11 years and his 12th paintings of fiction received him his moment Governor General’s Award for Fiction on the age of sixty, over robust pageant from Margaret Atwood and Alice Munro.
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Title. 1 Strangely I heard a stranger say, I am with you. —RAINER MARIA RILKE Prefatory Note The dated selections between chapters are quoted (some with minor rearrangements) from the journals kept by Robert Hood (1797—1821) and John Richardson (1787—1865) during the first Franklin overland expedition (1819-1822) to the Arctic coast of what is today Canada. A DISCOVERY OF STRANGERS Cover Other Books by this Author About the Author Title Page Copyright Map Chapter 1 The Animals In This Country Chapter 2 Into a Northern Blindness of Names Chapter 3 Midshipman George Back Chapter 4 Snowshoes Chapter 5 Seaman John Hepburn Chapter 6 Momentary Mercies of the Bear Chapter 7 Entering Exhaustion Chapter 8 Stolen Woman Chapter 9 Geese Chapter 10 Offering Strange Fire Chapter 11 Out of the Lake Chapter 12 Eating Starvation Chapter 13 The Split-footed Caribou Acknowledgements 1 THE ANIMALS IN THIS COUNTRY The land is so long, and the people travelling in it so few, the curious animals barely notice them from one lifetime to the next.
He will dare to draw, with his finger on the ground between them, a very small picture of the land. He will say to Bigfoot as he draws: “I think, if These English are to know anything, you will have to name it. Tell them this: here we are, on Tucho, and here our greatest river begins, Dehcho, below the great bay of Tucho we call Breasts Like a Woman, flowing west and then north. And here is the other river, which flows east and then north, the Ana-tessy. And here between them, look, is the River of Copperwoman.
All the animals knew this, but they didn’t think about that. The silver wolf who lived with the caribou had never been anything but a wolf, and he would have defied any animal, and that included the seven members of his pack, to know his name. However, sometimes when the strands of their twilight howl strayed alone and united again over the long evening hills, or his voice deepened into that longer warning other males could only hear and avoid, the silver wolf remembered himself as roaming alone, a presence of untouchable enigma between the eskers and the ocean, an apparition so gigantic that people are like mosquitoes to him, trifles to swat and eat whatever tasty parts he deigns to tear out of them.
A Discovery of Strangers by Rudy Wiebe