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The Resource Mamaskatch : a Cree coming of age, Darrel J. McLeod

Mamaskatch : a Cree coming of age, Darrel J. McLeod

Label
Mamaskatch : a Cree coming of age
Title
Mamaskatch
Title remainder
a Cree coming of age
Statement of responsibility
Darrel J. McLeod
Creator
Author
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
"As a small boy in remote Alberta, Darrel J. McLeod is immersed in his Cree family's history, passed down in the stories of his mother, Bertha. But after a series of tragic losses, Bertha turns wild and unstable, and their home life becomes chaotic. Meanwhile, he begins to question and grapple with his sexual identity--a reckoning complicated by the repercussions of his abuse and his sibling's own gender transition. Thrillingly written in a series of fractured vignettes, and unflinchingly honest, Mamaskatch--"It's a wonder!" in Cree--is a heartbreaking account of how traumas are passed down from one generation to the next, and an uplifting story of one individual who broke the cycle in pursuit of a fulfilling and adventurous life"--
Storyline
Tone
Writing style
Award
Governor General's Literary Award for English-Language Nonfiction, 2018.
Review
  • In his first book, McLeod writes about life with a fractured family and surviving a tumultuous childhood. The memoir begins with the story of McLeod's mother, Bertha, who, along with several female relatives, was sent to a Catholic residential school from which they eventually escaped. Bertha raised her children Catholic alongside a strong respect for Cree traditions. As a result of Bertha's alcoholism, McLeod spent time living with an extended family, ultimately returning home to his mother. The author struggles to keep up with schoolwork while caring for younger siblings and suffering abuse, physical and sexual, from his brother-in-law. This is not your ordinary coming-of-age story; it's a multilayered account of a boy growing into manhood questioning his own gender identity while also confronting racism and bullying. VERDICT This poignant memoir presents a story about growing up surrounded by difficulties and also a window into the world of the Cree. --Jacqueline Parascandola (Reviewed 05/01/2019) (Library Journal, vol 144, issue 4, p104)
  • /* Starred Review */ In his debut, the winner of the 2018 Governor General's Literary Award for Nonfiction, McLeod recounts his childhood and coming-of-age in Treaty Eight Cree territory in Northern Alberta. Told predominantly in English, with a smattering of French and infused with important moments of untranslated Cree language, the fragmented and seemingly dissonant episodic chapters contain elements that are present in many Native/First Nations memoirs: alcohol, drugs, domestic violence, abuse, racism, religious intolerance, and poverty. However, these details don't exist to pleasure the white gaze or to satisfy any savior complex. These aspects, delineated in the segmented narratives, reflect candid truths and the brokenness that occurs in a life surrounded by settler colonialism and fueled by historical trauma. They also serve as an acknowledgment, which is the first step to healing. Whether retelling his mother's stories, such as her escape from residential school, or recounting the grooming and abuse he experienced from his brother-in-law, his search for intimacy, or his desire for reconnection to Cree tradition, the author ably conveys all of the devastating guilt, shame, remorse, and emptiness that he has experienced. Still, it's clear that McLeod isn't "looking for pity." As the title of the opening chapter, "Spirals," suggests—and just as his mother did in her own "magical way"—the author shares his stories in a spiral, revisiting "each theme several times over, providing a bit more information with each pass," until it "wash[es] away the heaviness." Readers able to "just sit back and listen without interrupting" (a lesson young Darrel learned from hearing his mother's stories) will share in the secret knowledge that coming-of-age has little to do with losing one's innocence and everything to do with maintaining one's hope. Lyrically written and linked by family, compassion, forgiveness, and hope, Mamaskatch sings out as a modern-day celebration of healing. (Kirkus Reviews, April 15, 2019)
Assigning source
Provided by publisher
Biography type
individual biography
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
10741502
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
McLeod, Darrel J
Dewey number
  • 971.2004/973230092
  • B
Illustrations
illustrations
Index
no index present
LC call number
E99.C88
Literary form
non fiction
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • McLeod, Darrel J
  • McLeod, Darrel J.
  • Cree Indians
  • Indigenous men
http://bibfra.me/vocab/lite/titleRemainder
a Cree coming of age
Label
Mamaskatch : a Cree coming of age, Darrel J. McLeod
Instantiates
Publication
Note
Originally published in Canada by Douglas & McIntyre, 2018
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Dimensions
22 cm
Edition
First US edition.
Extent
228 pages
Isbn
9781571313874
Lccn
2019003378
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
Other physical details
illustrations
Label
Mamaskatch : a Cree coming of age, Darrel J. McLeod
Publication
Note
Originally published in Canada by Douglas & McIntyre, 2018
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Dimensions
22 cm
Edition
First US edition.
Extent
228 pages
Isbn
9781571313874
Lccn
2019003378
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
Other physical details
illustrations

Library Locations

    • Lindenhurst Memorial LibraryBorrow it
      1 Lee Ave, Lindenhurst, NY, 11757, US
      40.68248 -73.36768
    • Patchogue-Medford LibraryBorrow it
      54-60 E. Main St, Patchogue, NY, 11772, US
      40.76538 -73.013599
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