By Kevin Patterson
(Anchor, Paperback, 9780307278944, 400pp.)
Publication Date: July 8, 2008
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Born in the 1950s, Victoria knows nothing but the nomadic life of the Inuit until, at age ten, she is sent to a sanitarium to recover from tuberculosis. Six years later, she returns to a radically different world, a stranger to her family and culture. She marries a non-Inuit, Robertson; as their children gravitate toward the pop culture of the mainland, and as her husband exploits the economic opportunities that the Arctic offers, Victoria is torn between her family and her ancestors, between the communal life of the North and the material life of the “South.” Kevin Patterson, acclaimed author of The Water in Between and Country of Cold, exposes the consequences of cultural assimilation, and the toll that modernization takes on communities in this epic novel of the Arctic.
Kevin Patterson grew up in Manitoba, and put himself through medical school by joining the Canadian army. Now a specialist in internal medicine, he practices in the Arctic and on the coast of British Columbia. His first book, The Water In Between, was a New York Times Notable Book. Country of Cold, his debut short fiction collection, won the Rogers Writers' Trust Fiction Prize in 2003, as well as the inaugural City of Victoria Butler Book Prize. He lives on Saltspring Island, Canada.
Physician Kevin Patterson has treated patients in the Arctic, in Kandahar and on remote Pacific Islands. He says that Western ideas and the effects of urbanization are making people everywhere in the world both fatter and sicker. More at NPR.org
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"Gently seductive. . . . Remarkably compelling. . . . [Patterson's] insight into the human condition pulls us to the heart of events."—The Washington Post“Utterly absorbing. . . . Engag[es] the heart as well as the mind in the service of a greater truth.” —The Times-Picayune “Patterson's own experience . . . lends his simply told, involving novel an unmatchable authority.”—Entertainment Weekly“Patterson is a sure guide through inhospitable terrain, be it [that] of the tundra or the far recesses of the soul.”—The New Yorker