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Song of the Crowby Layne Maheu
Synopses & Reviews
From the moment that he looks down on the ancient gray head of Noah, who is swinging his stone axe, the narrating crow in this unique and remarkable epic knows that these creators called Man are trouble. He senses, too, that the natural order of things is about to change.
At a time when so many of us are searching for meaning, Layne Maheu's debut novel lingers in a masterfully rendered ancient world just long enough to ponder our fears of disaster and to watch as humanity struggles to survive, to understand, and finally to prevail.
Recalling both the magical imagination of Richard Adams's Watership Down and the spiritual richness of Anita Diamant's The Red Tent, Song of the Crow is a soaring debut.
"In a surprising take on the tale of Noah's ark and the flood, Maheu's beguiling debut unfolds from the perspective of a crow. The crow-narrator (named 'I Am') first spies Noah (the beastman) from his nest in a tree (the Giant) that Noah is trying to chop down. From the start, I Am does not trust or understand the Man who lives in the 'underworld.' As I Am grows up, orphaned by his parents, his survival is a daily challenge: he flies to elude predators and rummage for food, often with another bird called Plum Black, sometimes consulting with elder Old Bone. I Am soon discovers that he can recognize the words of the God Crow, who speaks to Noah with zeal and commands him to continue building the ark. Suddenly, I Am realizes that he can also understand human speech, and eventually, just before the floods, he sneaks onto Noah's ark. The names sometimes confuse, but Maheu's fable works beautifully, probing the relationship between creatures of the heavens and those of the underworld. (June)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"After reading this remarkable book, you will marvel at every crow you see along the side of the road and maybe even begin to listen to their songs. Highly recommended..." Library Journal
"It's the author's own words that prove Song of the Crow's greatest strength, making readers appreciate a truly alien point of view..." Seattle Times
"Beautifully written and artfully imagined." Robert Hicks, author of The Widow of the South
"Layne Maheu weaves a rich mix of fiction, crow biology, and mythology blending Christian and Native American legends to tell the crow's story of humankind. The reader feasts on a fabulous crows' eye view of the birds' world and its connection to the human saga." John Marzluff, co-author of In the Company of Crows and Ravens
A narrating crow wonders why a lanky old man would build such an oddly shaped home--this RarkS--so far from the waters. At a time when many are searching for meaning, Maheu's extraordinary debut novel asks readers to ponder the unsettled state of the world.
About the Author
Layne Maheu lives with his son in Seattle, where he works as a carpenter. His short stories have appeared in the Other Voices, Northwest Review, Ascent, and others. Song of the Crow is his first novel.
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