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Cloud of Bone

3.62  ·  Rating Details ·  108 Ratings  ·  18 Reviews
From the bestselling author of Random Passage and Waiting for Time comes this masterful, engrossing story of the last surviving Beothuk, a World War II deserter and a recently widowed English woman at the end of the twentieth century.

During World War II, well into the Battle of the North Atlantic, Newfoundlander Kyle Holloway deserts from the Royal Navy. Now, hidden in a c
Hardcover, 464 pages
Published August 28th 2007 by Knopf Canada
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Sara Norquay
Jan 03, 2011 Sara Norquay rated it it was amazing
This book manages to connect three stories that take place at different times in history and concern different protagonists. It is a kind of magic that haunts the reader long after the book has been read and returned to the library.
Jun 26, 2009 Chloelees rated it really liked it
Lovely stories, my favourite being the one about the Beothuk tribe from Newfoundland - absolutely lovely and heartbreaking.
Feb 24, 2012 Debby rated it it was amazing
I didn't know what to expect from this book. It surpassed anything I could have thought. A wonderful glimpse into the history of Nfld. I loved the story of the Beothuk people. I will definitely have this book on my list of favorites.
Apr 10, 2009 Louise rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
From dust jacket:

"During World War II, well into the Battle of the North Atlantic, Newfoundlander Kyle Holloway deserts from the Royal Navy. Now, hidden in a cave below St. Mary's Church, the war-haunted young man remembers years of carefree friendship and petty crime in the narrow streets of St. John's, disoriented and tormented by his own act of betrayal, Kyle hears a low, persistent murmuring, retelling a story of distant, far-reaching betrayals.

Over a century earlier, Shanawdithit, a young B
I bought this book, in paperback, at the local airport for an outbound journey. As always, when I’m travelling, I tend to buy books that are very literary, and I end up reading magazines or lighter fare instead when I’m en route. When I finally read it, I didn't read in 10 or 20 minute bites; instead I settled in with it for 2 hour blocks of time.

I was attracted to this book because it is, in part, the story of the last surviving Beothuk, the aboriginal people of Newfoundland. When I was young I
Cloud of Bone is written in three parts, each focusing on a different character: Kyle Holloway, a WWII deserter; Shanawdithit, a Beothuk woman; and Judith, an English anthropologist. The stories seem mostly disconnected until almost the very end of the novel, when they all come together. Shanawdithit's narrative, the second one, is by far the longest, and can be a little drawn out at time. It's also the section that seems the most forced, as if Morgan had a hard time getting into Shanawdithit's ...more
Shonna Froebel
Nov 19, 2012 Shonna Froebel rated it it was amazing
Shelves: canadian
I really enjoyed Morgan's first book, and liked her second one, but this one I loved. Her details of the Beothuks in their last days were founded on fact, and thus read true. The story of Shawandithit is touching, and appealing to me. She came alive, as did the other Beothuks around her. The character of Kyle Holloway, a young Newfoundland man who entered the Navy early by lying about his age, also comes alive. He finds himself in deeper than he expected and struggling to cope. The present day ...more
Jul 09, 2013 Fran rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is my first read of Bernice Morgan's books. I absolutely loved the harrowing and painful story of the last of the Beothuk Indians and how Shawnadithit links a WW2 deserter and an English anthropologist. The Beothuk section really is the throbbing heart of this story.
Feb 18, 2012 Jennifer rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I'm a big fan of Newfoundland historical fiction. The story of the Beothuk holds a lot of opportunity for fiction since no one is left to tell the real truth. This book is poignant and the characters are vivid.
Sep 10, 2013 Gretchen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The book is arranged in three parts, a mystery about memory and random connections. Part 2 was the best...follows the demise of the Beothuk Indians with the influx of European settlers...absolutely haunting. The Canadian sailor struggling with past misdeeds and the English anthropologist dealing with the death of her husband (parts 1 and 3 respectively) are solid but don't have the emotional impact of the thread connecting them (part 2). Still enjoyed it. No one can capture loneliness and ...more
Apr 12, 2012 Liz added it
This is an extremely interesting and very detailed book about the life of the last of the Beothuk Indians in Newfoundland. Full of authentic detail about their daily life and the impact of their tragic encounters with white men.
My only reservation is that the book is strangely structured with several additional plot lines which are not satisfactorily developed or connected.

Definitely worth reading for its valuable information on Canadian history.
Lori Siska
Sep 24, 2014 Lori Siska rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book. We have such fantastic writers in Newfoundland and my only regret is that I didn't discover this book sooner.

The ending was a great summation/tie-in of the whole book and left me with a little smile on the very last page.

Fabulous read!
Lori Bamber
Mar 18, 2016 Lori Bamber rated it really liked it
Shattering. Beautifully written. Newfoundland from the early 1,800s almost to present time, Cloud of Bone maps the things that connect us and those that destroy the connections between us.
Katrina Stonoff
Jun 03, 2012 Katrina Stonoff rated it really liked it
This was the second WWI novel I read in a row -- weird! It's a bit slowly paced for me, but the story was fantastic. I especially love how she wove together such disparate tales.
May 17, 2012 Fireseed rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed the history of Newfoundland in this novel and the window into the lives of the Beothuk (which takes up the largest part of the book).
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