Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Book Review: Crow Lake

Crow Lake
Mary Lawson
For anyone who likes cottage country, and rural life, this author draws on her experiences and knowledge of Central Ontario. I preferred the first book, Crow Lake (2002), over another, Road Ends, which I just finished.
That said, I will be getting more of hers!

The story takes place in mythical Crow Lake, but for anyone who knows Central Ontario, they say it is somewhere near New Liskeard region, near where silver was found in Cobalt, Ontario back in the day.

It takes place in the 1950s, when I was born (1956), those were different times. The narrator is looking back, as we tend to do, at her life.
I found it rich in imagery, and a terrific read. I won't outline the plot as many reviewers do, as I prefer going in blind!

This novel genre is called a Bildungsroman, a coming-of-age novel, which focuses on the young person's transition from youth to adulthood. Since joining Barrie's novel study group, I've begun to enjoy the YA genre, since several of the members are YA writers. This one is an excellent book. I almost wish I were still teaching, as this would be a terrific one to use with students. That ship has sailed! There is a study guide, which is terrific.

  1. Crow Lake is a 2002 first novel written by Canadian author Mary Lawson. It won the Books in Canada First Novel Award in the same year and won the McKitterick Prize in 2003. Wikipedia
Central Ontario

Crow Lake Summary & Study Guide Description

Crow Lake Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:
This detailed literature summary also contains Topics for Discussion and a Free Quiz on Crow Lake by Mary Lawson.
Lawson's Books

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Olga Hebert said...

I like books that have that sense of place. Funny how you never stop making little lesson plans in your head after you have been a teacher.

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

Sounds very interesting even for one who doesn't know the country as well as you do -- but especially for those who do! I've always loved coming of age novels and only recently learned there is word for them (which I am not going to attempt to spell here). (I subscribe to "Word of the DAy" email.)

Sarah Laurence said...

How nice to hear that our group has introduced you to YA. It must be interesting to read about the time of your early childhood.

Barrie said...

I really enjoyed this book! And The Other Side of the Bridge. I didn't realize Crow Lake was meant to be somewhere in the New Liskeard area. Thanks for the detail. And, of course, thank you for reviewing! Saw on FB that you're keeping up with snow removal. :)

William Kendall said...

Thanks for pointing it out!

There's a children's author here who uses the sense of place very much in his novels. I should really photograph the area he wrote about.

Red said...

At the beginning of the school year I would be given a box of juvenile fiction books to read and recommend what goes on the list and what's not suitable. I got to like junior fiction.

Cloudbuster said...

I'm unfamiliar with this author, but the book sounds like my cup of tea. I have a particular weakness for Canadian authors and tales. Thanks for the heads up!

Hilary said...

I read this one a while back and quite enjoyed it. I don't think I've read her other two yet. I might have attempted Road's End but let it slide.

If you haven't already read it, you might also enjoy Frances Itani's Leaning, Leaning Over Water.

Karen said...

I LOVE her work. Still waiting on one book and I'll have read them all.
Will this relentless cold ever end? Glad you got the well pump situation sorted out. I'd been having kittens if mine started spitting!