Adam's Reviews > The Story of General Dann and Mara's Daughter, Griot and the Snow Dog

The Story of General Dann and Mara's Daughter, Griot and the ... by Doris Lessing
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Oct 01, 07

Read in July, 2006

I honestly picked this off of the library's "new" shelf because of its title. What the heck is a "snow dog"? Reading the descriptives in the book flap, I found it even more interesting, with promises of survival and new civilization rising from the ashes of our contemporary society, set far into the future. I'm a sucker for that kind of thing, and as it turns out, Doris Lessing writes about it (and just about anything else she tries her hand at) better than most.

To my detriment, I hadn't read anything by Lessing until this book. She's a rare breed in today's literary world, an aged British woman with a fine grasp of the nuances of the English language, awash in a long, long list of quality novels, paperbacks, and other publications that she's released to quiet critical fervor.

I'd heartily recommend this book (and it's prequel, 'Mara and Dann: An Adventure', to anyone who hasn't experienced Lessing's work before. She's a writer who captures both dark and light in ways that expose details I hadn't seen before, at turns haunting and beautiful and at others crushing and sad.
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message 1: by [deleted user] (new)

I couldn't have said it better myself! "What the heck is a snow dog?" the very same thought crossed my mind as I examined the book and I was delighted too when I realized it was set in a dying future, the whole dystopian thing is quite appealing to me. To be honet, in my case I picked up the book because of its cover, not always the best thing to do but it worked out perfectly this time. Anyway, I must say this book was a great purchase (a great way to start the year) I enjoyed it enormously despite not being familiar with the characters. Somehow, Lessing managed to transport me into this whole new world and introduced me to this endearing charaters in this emotional journey; not much of an adventure but an inner journey through those mysterious landscapes of the human nature. I don't know how she does it but I felt so moved by her story and characters, she truly brings them to life with her words. This book was all it took for me to fall in love with Doris Lessing's work. I look forward to reading more of her and I am eager to get my hands on the prequel of this touching novel (I so want to meet young Dann and Mara!). Do you think this novel is "a bridge to a yet-to-be-published finale"? A part of me does hope so, did you feel there were some loose ends? I loved this book but I feel a little restless about the ending. Anyway, I enjoyed reading your review, you nailed it. Cheers

Adam Alex, my thanks for your kind words! I've found that any of her books about Mara and Dann are wonderful, and her series about "the fifth child", Ben, is nearly horrifying (even as it is, in its own, beautiful). A fantastic author, to be sure.

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