Josh's Reviews > Returning to Earth

Returning to Earth by Jim Harrison
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's review
Mar 12, 2008

really liked it
Read in March, 2008

okay, i'm going to come clean about a very un-PC trait of mine: i have an aesthetic aversion to native american culture. it just rubs me the wrong way in film, book, what have you. i'm officially sorry. and, officially, i can't help it.

that made this book all the more surprising. this sensitive and absorbing story of a father's death and the impact it has on those close to him is ingeniously told from the point of view of five of the story's characters in separate, discrete sections that move the story along sequentially in spite of the change of narrators.

this is a (mixed) native american family, and their culture is interwoven throughout the story so organically that it becomes an added layer of richness and fascination rather than a self-important focal point. i enjoyed spending time with this family, and witnessing how the world appears differently to different hearts.
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Carly Svamvour I commend you for being so honest, Josh. I personally like writing with a native flavour, but I don't expect everyone else to like the same things.

It is unfortunate that we live in a time where one cannot freely express their likes and dislikes for fear of being chastized for political/social incorrectness.

Every person should feel they can speak freely.

Although I have nothing against gay people, I really have no interest in people's sexual preferences and think far too much is made of it.

But if a story is done well, I have no problem with it.

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