Louise Erdrich is a gifted writer who brings life to stories, particularly stories about Native Americans. Her novel, The Round House, was one of the best recent novels I read, so I was excited when LaRose was available through my local library.
The writing was exceptional as always, but the story moved slowly for me. I have also been struggling to find time to read, so that was probably a factor as well.
LaRose is the youngest child of Landreaux and Emmaline Iron. After Landreaux accidentally kills a neighbor’s son LaRose becomes the who becomes the peace offering. Peter and Nola Ravich are devastated by the death of their son, Dusty, and out of desperation accept LaRose. LaRose then becomes the healer, which he has actually been destined to do as one of a long line of LaRoses endowed with power and spiritual qualities. LaRose becomes the protector of Nola who is suicidal after her son’s death, he becomes the bridge between his new “sister” Maggie and her parents and he remains the little brother in his own biological family, splitting time between the Iron and Ravich homes.
There are many other characters who you learn about throughout the novel, but it is the generations of LaRoses that are the most interesting and compelling.
In some of the other reviews, it was noted that the novel is set in 1999. I didn’t really notice when it was set. I knew it was in “modern times,” but the story isn’t tied to a year or a time period.
If you like Louise Erdich, I think you will like LaRose, however if you are new to her, I would recommend Round House.
Note: I finished this book on March 20th. I was just a little slow in finishing and posting my review.