Indian Horse

Indian Horse

A Novel

Book - 2012
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Saul Indian Horse, having hit rock bottom in a treatment centre for alcohol addiction, wants peace. He sees the only way to find it is to tell his life story as a Northern Ojibway with all its joys and sorrows. As he journeys back he comes to recognize the influence of everyday magic on his life.
Publisher: Vancouver : Douglas & McIntyre, c2012
ISBN: 9781553654025
Branch Call Number: FIC WAGAM


From Library Staff

BPLpicks Sep 12, 2015

A wonderful choice for a book club. A powerful story with a uniquely Canadian setting and told by a master storyteller. Highly recommended.

mayfairlady Dec 07, 2014

Flawless storytelling - divine.

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Apr 07, 2019

This book was very interesting, as it explained much about the residential schools. I really enjoyed the story, even though I'm not much interested in hockey, but it was a theme throughout & it was a well-written story. Mr. Wagameese was a very good writer & will be missed.

JessicaGma Mar 27, 2019

It is a beautiful and sad story that makes the residential school experience come alive.

Jan 07, 2019

Well worth it. Deeply touching, sad and yet completely believable. If any hockey players/coaches/fans need a book that touches on the theme of reconciliation with our indigenous people this would be it.

Dec 03, 2018

Just finished reading this for the second time. It really gets into the mind of Sam Indian Horse and how he felt treated by the "whites". Since I have 3 family members who have played hockey, I enjoyed the description of the games he played, how he felt on the ice and the team spirit he enjoyed. Great book for boys ages 12 and up especially if they are interested in hockey and can get past the first 10 very short chapters.

Indian Horse, by Richard Wagamese is a beautiful, captivating story of a broken Ojibway man, Saul Indian Horse. He faces the atrocities he endured at residential school as well as the racism and abuse he experienced as he tried to build a life in Northern Ontario in the 1960s. The story starts as Saul has entered an alcohol treatment centre as a grown man and is forced to face his past in order to move forward.

The portrayal of the sexual, cultural and physical abuse the Canadian residential school system inflicted on Saul is hard to read but with it comes understanding. Through the heartbreaking story, starting with Saul’s early life with his family living a traditional life in the Northern Ontario bush until being captured and taken to residential school, Saul perseveres and finds hope when he is introduced to hockey and discovers his passion and exceptional talent.

This 2013 Canada Reads nominee story is an important story about courage and healing and I would highly recommend this book to anyone from teens onward. (Submitted by Michelle).

Sep 07, 2018

I was moved to read this book by comments on the contents, and I was well rewarded. Mr. Wagamese does, truly, write exquisitely. He brings to life the story of particular and generational abuse perpetrated by staff of the schools on native children who were forced to attend in white hopes of destroying the children's "inherent evil" and turning them into proper servants for the white society that took for their own personal use everything the Indians had had for millennia .

The story unfolds gradually, and one is taken into the story viscerally by the extreme care Mr. Wagamese takes to make everything real without being sordid. The recent disclosure of the Catholic church clergy's generational abuse of children in Pennsylvania and its tacit acceptance and cover up by the structure of the church bring fresh power to this story of Saul Indian Horse and his redemptive journey. It brought tears and a sense of renewal of the spirit to me.

Aug 24, 2018

Great little book, an emotional story and so interesting. It was a sad story overall but, juxtaposed against the happiness of the teenagers loving and playing hockey, it did not seem a sad story at all. Very easy reading, simply written and powerful.

Jun 07, 2018

Richard Wagamese writes exquisitely about
a life bereft of tenderness and caring.
A survivor of residential schools-
a target of prejudice on the ice and on the job-
The protagonist soars and stumbles through it all.
Reading this, you can hear a pin drop.

May 27, 2018

Small print only?

Apr 11, 2018

This book is awesome!!!! I really recommend reading Indian horse.

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Mar 12, 2017

I understood then that when you miss a thing it leaves a hole that only the thing you miss can fill.

Feb 13, 2013

"When your innocence is stripped from you, when your people are denigrated, when the family you came from is denounced and your tribal ways and rituals are pronounced backward, primitive, savage, you come to see yourself as less than human. That is hell on earth, that sense of unworthiness. That's what they inflicted on us."

Feb 13, 2013

"We need mystery,...Creator in her wisdon knew this. Mystery fills us with awe and wonder. They are the foundations of humility, and humility, grandson, is the foundation of all learning."

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Aboriginals_Autochtones Jan 14, 2013

Aboriginals_Autochtones thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over


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Aboriginals_Autochtones Jan 14, 2013

From D&M publishers:

"Saul Indian Horse has hit bottom. His last binge almost killed him, and now he’s a reluctant resident in a treatment centre for alcoholics, surrounded by people he’s sure will never understand him. But Saul wants peace, and he grudgingly comes to see that he’ll find it only through telling his story. With him, readers embark on a journey back through the life he’s led as a northern Ojibway, with all its joys and sorrows.

With compassion and insight, author Richard Wagamese traces through his fictional characters the decline of a culture and a cultural way. For Saul, taken forcibly from the land and his family when he’s sent to residential school, salvation comes for a while through his incredible gifts as a hockey player. But in the harsh realities of 1960s Canada, he battles obdurate racism and the spirit-destroying effects of cultural alienation and displacement."


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