Synopses & Reviews
A fresh, funny look at growing up Native in the North, by award-winning author Richard Van Camp.
Larry is a Dogrib Indian growing up in the small northern town of Fort Simmer. His tongue, his hallucinations and his fantasies are hotter than the sun. At sixteen, he loves Iron Maiden, the North and Juliet Hope, the high school "tramp." When Johnny Beck, a Metis from Hay River, moves to town, Larry is ready for almost anything.
In this powerful and often very funny first novel, Richard Van Camp gives us one of the most original teenage characters in fiction. Skinny as spaghetti, nervy and self-deprecating, Larry is an appealing mixture of bravado and vulnerability. His past holds many terrors: an abusive father, blackouts from sniffing gasoline, an accident that killed several of his cousins. But through his friendship with Johnny, hes ready now to face his memoriesand his future.
Marking the debut of an exciting new writer, The Lesser Blessed is an eye-opening depiction of what it is to be a young Native man in the age of AIDS, disillusionment with Catholicism and a growing world consciousness.
A coming-of-age story that any fan of The Catcher in the Rye will enjoy.
The Lesser Blessed
is a powerful coming-of-age story edgy, stark, and at times, darkly funny that centers around Larry, a Native teenager trying to cope with a painful past and find his place in a confusing and stressful modern world. Skinny as spaghetti, nervy, and self-deprecating, the 16-year-old is an appealing mixture of bravado and vulnerability. His life has held many terrors: an abusive father, blackouts from sniffing gasoline, and an accident that killed several cousins. He has a quick tongue, hallucinations, an appreciation for Iron Maiden, and hot fantasies about Juliet Hope, the school tramp.
Eventually, through his friendship with Johnny Beck, a Native from another Nation, Larry develops an expanded world consciousness and a stability that helps him face his dark memories and create a brighter future.