- Paperback: 304 pages
- Publisher: Penguin Classics; Reissue edition (May 27 2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0142437514
- ISBN-13: 978-0142437513
- Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 1.8 x 19.6 cm
- Shipping Weight: 136 g
- Average Customer Review: 4 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #293,492 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Falcon Paperback – May 27 2003
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About the Author
John Tanner was born on the Kentucky River around 1780. He spent most of his life with the Ojibwa tribe, and disappeared in 1846.
Bestselling author Louise Erdrich grew up in North Dakota and is of German and Turtle Mountain Chippewa descent. Her novels include Love Medicine and The Beet Queen.
Top customer reviews
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Tanner's narrative is truly amazing for it's matter-of-fact style and the wealth of information it contains on every facet of Indian life in the late 18th and early 19th century including hunting, family life, Indian-white relations, foodways, views on war and murder, even attitudes toward sexual orientation. Tanner tells a story from the point of view of a man who has lived a hard life but is determined to live it as well as he is able. He makes no romantic notions about the Indians nor does he have sentimental longings for his white family. Unlike other famous captivity narratives like those of Mary Rowlandson, James Smith, or Oliver Spencer, this story is of the unredeemed captive who willingly chooses to embrace the neo-lithic lifestyle and the hardships that such a life entails, but makes no regrets of his life choices.
The historical and ethnographical information contained here alone makes it worthwhile reading, but the pure human content the author puts into this work makes it truly great.
The writing is intense, and builds slowly. Tanner is anything but dramatic, but the events of his life command respect. This is a book that no author could have created artficially: its power is natural.
Nonetheless, I would have liked to learn something about where, when, and by whom the book was written. I suspect my Penguin paperback may be missing something. Page 228 refers me to a note at the end of the volume, but it is not there.
Generally, I do not care for Introductions. However, the Introduction by Louise Erdrich is worth reading carefully, before and after reading the narrative.
books I have ever read, and must be considered a classic.
It was utterly enthralling. I found myself wondering how he
ever wrote the book, since it is very well written, but he had
little knowledge of English until later life. Found out on the
web that back in Sault Ste Marie, he narrated his life to a doctor, who wrote it all down, and later published it.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Anyone with a lesser constitution would have succumbed early on, but Tanner survives it for decades, but finally disappears mysteriously. Fascinating reading, but you have to wonder why he didn't fight back more than he did.
The numerous trips by canoe and portage back and forth between the far points of the Great Lakes and Manitoba are treated lightly, as if the trips were no big deal. One wishes he would have been more descriptive of the routes and the hardships endured.