“[These characters] will enter your world and your dreams: they will follow you to the grocery store and ride around in your cart. You’ll be glad for their company. This is a book and a place crafted with care, not easily put down or left behind.”–Toni Jensen
“Weaving elements of story, mystery and dream, tethering the collection with one transcendent description of landscape after another, Robidoux explicates both the deep sadness of the people whose lives have been devalued by the US mainstream for centuries, and also their indomitable strength.”–Pam Houston
“When I was seven my mother tried to kill me,” so begins the journey of Lucy Little Bear in a place “so cold salt water freezes in the bay.” All the characters in these linked narratives find their way into the warmth of your soul. An old woman, Lily Paul sings in the old language until the fire sings back. She turns into an ermine to survive a perilous journey to her trailer park, “Hollywood,” on coastal Maine. And there is Shawna and the danger of those Moonlight Tours. With her words, Robidoux creates a mystical place where “fog floats in and out with the tide…creating a feeling the world is just a dream.” But life on the reservation is not a dream. These stories tell the harsh realities of life with murderous men and murderous weather. There is “generational loneliness” in the eerie call of a loon on Pennamaquan Lake. Wonderful place names live as characters in the beauty of these stories that transcend the harshness and recall the “star bridge” over which we walked.
Barbara Robidoux (Eastern Tsalagi (Cherokee)) is a poet, storyteller, and lover of the earth. She lives in northern New Mexico where she roams the mountains and mesas of sacred places, making offerings for their renewal. Before moving to New Mexico, Robidoux lived on the Passamaquoddy Reservation in Maine, where much of her fiction is set. She is the author of three books of poetry and two short story collections. Her fiction has appeared in Denver Quarterly, Yellow Medicine Review, Santa Fe Literary Review, Dawnland Voices, and numerous other anthologies. Robidoux holds an MFA in Creative Writing from the Institute of American Indian Arts, an MA from Vermont College, and a BA from the University of New Hampshire. Her latest collection of poetry, Stirring Sorrow Into Soup will be released by Finishing Line Press in spring 2021.