BOOK REVIEW

Saturday, October 10, 2009

ACROSS THE ENDLESS RIVER by Thad Carhart

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

A dual citizen of the United States and Ireland, Thad Carhart is the author of the international bestseller The Piano Shop on the Left Bank. He lives in Paris with his wife, the photographer Simo Neri, and their two children.








ABOUT THE BOOK

Across The Endless River is a historical novel about Jean-Baptiste Charbonneau, the son of Sacagawea, and his intriguing sojourn as a young man in 1820s Europe.

Born in 1805 on the Lewis and clark expedition, Jean-baptiste Charbonneau was the son of the Voyage of Discovery's translators, Sacagawea and Toussaint Charbonneau. Across The Endless River evokes the formative years of this mixed-blood child of the frontier, entering the wild and mysterious world of his boyhood along the Missouri. Baptiste is raised both as William Clark's ward in St. Louis and by his parents among the villages of the Mandan tribe on the far northern reaches of the river.

In 1823 eighteen-year old Baptiste is invited to cross the Atlantic with the young Duke Paul of Wurttemberg, whom he meets on the frontier. During their travels throughout Europe, Paul introduces Baptiste to a world he never imagined. Increasingly, Baptiste confronts the limitations of life as an outsider; only Paul's older cousin, Princess Theresa, understands the richness of his heritage. Their affair is both passionate and tender, but Theresa"s clear-eyed notions of love, marriage, and the need to fashion one's own future push Baptiste to consider what he truly needs. In Paris he meets Maura Hennesy, the bautiful and independent daughter of a French-Irish wine merchant. Baptiste describes his life on the fast-changing frontier to Maura, and she begins to imagine a different destiny with this enigmatic American. Baptiste ultimately faces a choice: whether to stay in Europe or to return to the wilds of North America. His decision will resonate strongly with those who today find themselves at the intersection of cultures, languages, and customs.


MY REVIEW
For the years I served as a minister I did not read many novels and almost no fiction. Now that I am retired I have found time for both. Across The Endless River is one of the best written and most interesting books I have read this year. This is a thoroughly engaging and captivating book. I agree with The New Yorker, when they write: "Carhart writes with a sensuousness enhanced by patience and grounded by the humble acquisition of new insight into music, his childhood, and his relationship to the city of Paris." If you enjoy novels, you will love this book.

5 comments:

Heart2Heart said...

Clif,

What a great review for someone like you said, that didn't really read stories like these. Glad this one held your attention and gives us more variety to choose from.

Love and Hugs ~ Kat

Caroline said...

Enjoyed learning about this book. Your review makes me want to read it. I am always interested in learning and adventuring in different cultures. Thanks and Blessings.

Mary said...

Hi Clig,

Thank you for letting me the Morning Sunshine book is on its way...looking forward to reading it. This book also looks wonderful. Because you read so many, and of different topics and types, this must be very good to get a great review from you!

God bless,
Mary

Sally said...

I'm glad you enjoyed it.

Ms.Daisy said...

Clif,
This book sounds fascinating...I've always enjoyed reading about our early frontier days and I recently saw a documentary on the Lewis and Clark expedition that was excellent.
Also, thank you for letting me know about "Morning Sunshine!" I look forward to reading it.

~Jean