Trapped in the orbit of the buttes and a black obsidian Clovis, Hanna is sure there’s nothing romantic about her hot and dusty job as an archeologist in the cultural and real desert. As she negotiates the misogyny of this no-woman’s-land, she’s on the move to evade physical and spiritual abuse at the hands of oil-field boys, and guard the damaged and angelic Paul. She’s vegetarian in a fast food wasteland and a transcendentalist who can’t quite catch the wave of nothingness. Her clan of fellow archeologists tries to keep her from harm, but everything she truly needs lies outside the aegis of their reach.
Clinton’s novel explores the possible history of the Clovis people and their apocalyptic demise at the hands of their own elegant invention, the Clovis Point. The relevance of the eclipsed culture to the precarious balance of our own clouds the intense joys the characters feel as they navigate the wealth of the natural world.
Clovis casts an eye across the vast, empty lands of the Western American basins where the endless clamor of petroleum developments rings tirelessly. Told from the point of view of a working crew of archeological contractors who labor to save endangered artefacts from the churning machinations of the CanAm gas pipeline, Clovis bears witness to the quiet environmental usurpation of American public lands.
Clinton’s novel is an artful literary response to the unutterable and largely ignored decline of our collective natural wealth. Clinton mixes a sardonic misanthropy of our own current environmental course with jubilation, and the joy of love, the celebration of the human condition, and the intense passion of being immersed in the natural world.
Clovis will continue Harvard Square Editions’ tradition of promoting fiction that furthers civil and environmental causes in a market that would rather leave such voices unheard.
Jack Clinton was born in Price, Utah. Then, his mother moved the family to the Suburbs of New Haven, Connecticut. Jack was not on a college track in high school, and left the East Coast after graduating for the mountains of Wyoming.
Jack came of age in Wyoming in the company of ski bums, climbing bums, mountain guides, river guides, itinerate hippies, rednecks, and crazy people.
Eventually, he attended the University of Wyoming, earning a BA in English and a Masters in Spanish. He began teaching shortly after and lived in Spain twice.
The itch to write was always there, but it wasn't until he was married and settled with a child that he concluded he could actually do it. Clovis is his first Novel.
Clovis is a remarkable novel that forces the reader to question the delicate balance of our existence in this natural world. Like the vast western landscape where she makes her living, the protagonist, Hanna, constantly leaves the reader guessing what lies around the next corner. Her erratic behavior coupled with her overly educated eating habits continually and predictably place her in situations that leave the reader either on the edge of his or her seat or laughing out loud at the absurdity of it all. In addition, Clinton’s supporting characters supply the reader with a plethora of realities that so many of us need to face and realize as we swim upstream in this world of trickle down economics. In this corporate world driven by profit and loss statements, Clinton gently asks the reader to question the worth and value of the artifacts he or she will leave for the next world to discover.
An ambitious, complex novel about a region--and a main character--rife with contradictions. Hanna, a field archaeologist, is gifted and ornery and beautifully attuned to the mountains and deserts of the West. Clinton's depictions of sexism and sexual assault are timely and ring sadly true, but they are only part of his deep portrait of Hanna. The real power in this book lies in its evocation of a closely rendered natural world. Even Clinton's pillaged landscapes are painted in masterly strokes. CLOVIS raises many questions, especially about love and loyalty. It offers few answers. But that was fine with me. It's a novel aimed at the messiness of the real world, emotional and political. Sometimes we need our fiction straight, no chaser.
This story took my breath away. It takes place in a state few really know, my state. The author’s depth of feeling for the land, its history, its present issues and its fate, is farsighted. His descriptions evoke the feel of places unique to the west. A real page turner, the characters felt real. I often chuckled at an apt and astute description of the people you are likely to run into out here. Everything I love about Wyoming shows up in the story of Hanna, she’s very much a woman of our time. And the sense of the people who lived here in prehistory is compelling. I recommend reading Clovis and look forward to more by Jack Clinton.
I was sort of enjoying this book right up until the frat boy fantasy of a lesbian seeing an erect penis, deciding she should reward it for existing, and climbing on for a ride. I don't know any/many straight women who would do this much less lesbian women. The book lost me at that point and I struggled to finish it.
I wanted to love this book, but it was pretty disappointing overall. It didn’t really seem like there was an overall plot and a lot of the story felt stereotypical and pretentious, particularly in the character development. Unfortunately, it just wasn’t my jam.