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Kiss of the Fur Queen Paperback – Sep 14 1999

4.2 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Anchor Canada; 1 edition (Sept. 14 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780385258807
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385258807
  • ASIN: 0385258801
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 2 x 20.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 318 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #92,344 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

From Amazon

Following the phenomenal success and critical acclaim of Tomson Highway's two plays, The Rez Sisters and Dry Lips Oughta Move to Kapuskasing, his first novel, Kiss of the Fur Queen, similarly infuses stark realism with the "magic" of Cree culture and blends tragedy with raucous comedy.

The novel opens in 1951 with Abraham Okimasis's victory in "The World Championship Dog Derby," a major dog-sled race. Part of his prize is a kiss from the winner of a local beauty pageant, a young white woman with the title of Fur Queen. This touch of white culture indelibly marks the lives of Abraham's sons, Jeremiah and Gabriel, who grow into acclaimed artists attempting to work within white, European traditions while retaining the influence of Native culture. The novel follows the boys from the idyllic innocence of their Cree childhood through a forced relocation to an abusive residential school to their lives as young artists attempting to discover how far their natural talents can take them. Highway frankly depicts the abuse of Native students at the hands of the Catholic priests who run the residential schools, but falls short of overt condemnation. This startling material is tempered, in a remarkably skilful manipulation of prose, by an almost complete lack of editorial intrusion by the sympathetic narrator.

Kiss of the Fur Queen ultimately deserves to be a few hundred pages longer. Highway's discussions of racism, homosexuality, and cultural awkwardness toward the end of the novel would seem less like sociological set-pieces if he took more room to fully explore the complexities of these issues, which, in turn, would add even more life to two already compelling characters. Kiss may fall short of the near perfection of Highway's acclaimed plays, but it is a remarkably good first novel. --Jonathan Dewar

Review

"Tomson Highway's prose is beautiful, lyrical... Emotionally complex, witty, symphonic and sad, Kiss of the Fur Queen is a remarkable novel, filled with blood and guts, life and love." —The Vancouver Sun

"Kiss of the Fur Queen is a novel of affirmation ... a novel that dances with life." —The Globe and Mail

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14 customer reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars

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