Christy's Reviews > Brothers Three

Brothers Three by John Oskison
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's review
Sep 27, 2007

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bookshelves: native-american-lit-and-history, readinglist1
Read in March, 2008

This is a family saga that follows the Odell family and their Oklahoma farm, from Francis Odell's initial building of the farm, through the tough times that followed his death as his sons pursued their own ideas and interests (moving into the city and away from the farm, sinking money into cattle and more land and mines, playing the markets and losing everything with the crash of 1929), and into the promise of rebuilding in the third generation.

Although its author is part Cherokee, and the central characters are part Native American, this novel actually has little to do with Native American issues and themes. The part Native American characters could easily have been simply white farmers and they maintain virtually no connection with the Native American part of their heritage.

This is a popular novel that is not on the level of, but certainly recalls, the works of Steinbeck and Cather and Frost. It does this primarily through its emphasis on the land. The farm, after all, is the backbone of the Odell family, the one stable thing in their lives, and the thing that turns out to be worth fighting and working for. The farm is as much a character in Three Brothers as any of the three brothers are.

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