Trumpeting the Mohawk trilogy
Lillian Brown: Expressive writing. Captivating descriptions. Despite being set over a century ago, [Charter] tackles the intricacies of gender inequality and social relationships in a relatable manner, tying the struggles of its characters to contemporary issues. (Sky Walker Tehawennihárhos Charter).
Jane Ainslie: Charter should find a forever home with Canadians who want to learn about how the past makes the future. (Sky Walker Tehawennihárhos Charter).
Janine Brodie: Brilliant! A young Mohawk’s journey to find his voice amid colliding cultures, with a memorable ensemble of heroes and villains, and the certain allure of a plucky Scotchwoman. You’ll love this saga. (Sky Walker Tehawennihárhos).
Elly Buck: Although the second book builds beautifully on the first, the books also stand alone. The style of Vinegar Hill is rich in detail, yet humorous and witty. I love the characters, who seem real to me. Intricate details of their everyday lives make them come alive. Details put me in their midst. I am there. Right in their world. I find the speakers explode off of the page. Looking forward to the further adventures of Squire Davis. (Sky Walker Tehawennihárhos the Battle of Vinegar Hill).
Ken Davis: Minsos is a sophisticated, mature writer with a great sense of humour and the ability to keep the plot twisting and turning in a manner that keeps the tale fresh right to the last page. (Sky Walker Tehawennihárhos).
Mel Hurtig: No one understands culture like Minsos. A great yarn. Entertaining. Absorbing. Multiple cultural viewpoints merge. (Sky Walker Tehawennihárhos).
Muriel Kuchison: Minsos’ use of terse, clean prose, subtle humour, a plethora of individual character traits and vivid, colourful descriptions of places and events contributes to the utter pleasure of reading this novel. Herein, there are many lessons to be learned by history buffs as well as insights to be savoured and pondered by all. (Sky Walker Tehawennihárhos Charter).
Ian MacLaren: The whore on the hill doesn’t tire somehow, and I adored the tipped-over outhouse. Minsos handles violence very well, and it is not gratuitous; that is, retributive justice must have featured as prominently in British North America as it famously did in the US of A, all disclaimers about upright Upper Canada notwithstanding. Speaking of the latter, the free trade plot in human lives is rivetting, and the prospect of Filkin’s fate delicious. I also like the qualities of Squire that the tree rescue places on view. (Sky Walker Tehawennihárhos the Battle of Vinegar Hill).
Mark Smith: There’s historical fiction that removes the past to some safe and distant place, and there’s historical fiction that shows us how the past isn’t past at all and I’d say what [Minsos does] is the latter sort. (Sky Walker Tehawennihárhos: the Battle of Vinegar Hill).
The Women Review: Sky Walker Tehawennihárhos: Charter is a complex, action-filled novel about the 1840s in Canada West [formerly Upper Canada, now Ontario]. ….Leading us through the suspenseful plot, filled with humour and emotion, Minsos writes spare, clean prose. The late Mel Hurtig once said about her style, ‘Every word is right.’ In Minsos’ books we witness survival struggles, stereotypical biases and gender inequity. We follow the trail of shady land sharks and opportunistic religious scoundrels. Exposing documented thievery and tragic events of a place and time in our pre-Confederation history, the fabric of fiction is such that it allows us to glimpse into the heart of the indomitable human spirit. …. We cannot undo the past. But we can shape our destiny. A history lesson, yes. But such a joy to read.
For non-fiction historical background, see Readings
Thanks and boundless appreciation for support and kindness go to Fay Boer, Lesley Clarke, Kathy van Denderen, Dianne Gillespie, Jennifer Gobeil, Anita Jenkins, Ove Minsos, Laraine Orthlieb, and Sally Williams.
Featured image: Chuck Jones creator