Reviews

Moon of the Crusted Snow, by Waubgeshig Rice

corvidaeus's review

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challenging dark sad tense slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

3.5


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more_books_than_days's review

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4.0

The best dystopian literature reveals something of humanity by taking our societal weaknesses, our vulnerabilities, our potentials for disaster, and following the line of their truth to a resolution ringing with a warning. It is at once a social commentary, and a caution. Moon of The Crusted Snow does all of that, and something else besides.

With a deft hand, Waubgeshig Rice crumbles a system built by white settlers, leaving the distinct impression the world is ending, while revealing that is not necessarily the case: for some, the world already ended generations before.

It is truly white privilege for a reader to have access to dystopia only through a fictional narrative. In the wake of colonialism, NDN peoples have been living in a 'post-apocalyptic' reality. Consider the trick of settler treaties, the theft of traditional lands, and the raping of natural resources. Consider murder and starvation at the decree of white government, under whom children were stolen, culture was outlawed, water poisoned, and through which every attempt was made to erase identity. Still, there are those who remained. In the face of genocide, there were some who held onto pieces of what was, carrying it with them into a 'New World' that was decidedly intended to exclude them; a world where, by design, they should no longer even be. What is this except an apocalypse?

Building slowly at first, then gaining speed to a fierce climax, this was a book I couldn't put down. I only wish I was able to read the next story, the one of Evan and Nicole, and their children, of all the families from the rez, in their new home: free and not looking back.

alwyshaveabook82's review

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adventurous challenging dark inspiring tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

5.0

Great book. Forcible change as ʼcivilizationʼ fails   (read the same week as I read "Braiding Sweetgrass", so the ancient story of Windigo is illuminated in different ways).  This is a story of a young family managing to cope with the winter when electricity, food deliveries, communication links fail.  Characters are accurately drawn, with strengths and weaknesses leading to consequences.  I am not living in that geographical area, so am relying on my Outsider perception of accuracy in council, welfare, forcible removal, and language reclamation.

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icameheretoread's review

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4.0

I listened to this one on audio and it was fantastic. And I know, I know. I said I was over end of the world stories, but this one was on my TBR for forever and that's what I seem to be doing this November:knocking titles off the TBR list.
Evan and Nicole are relationship goals. I don't think I've seen such a positive couple presented in years, I don't mean they are particularly positive (how could they be, given the current situation?) but they are clearly still in love with each other after many years and they are a united front on maintaining home, community, and family values. It was so freaking refreshing to read. It doesn't even matter that Evan and Nicole are not "officially" married. Who cares? They are perfect.
As I am a sucker for a survival novel, I was all in from the get go with Moon. I fell in love with the many characters in the community and was literally sitting there entranced when the boys told the story about their escape from the college.
I was sad when the novel ended.

writingquills's review

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4.0

4.5

bexellency's review against another edition

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dark hopeful tense

4.0

Enjoyed this.  The premise reminds me of the Emberverse series, but this book is so much better in the authenticity of the community’s response, the strengths and weaknesses the community brings to change of situation.  I wanted to spend more time with the story, with these characters.  The book was quite short and the end was fast, nearly abrupt.

lyndsey77093's review against another edition

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dark mysterious tense medium-paced

5.0

honnari_hannya's review

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2.0

A bit too slow, even for a novel where the main point of tension is a small, isolated community suddenly beset by dangerous intrusions from the outside. I thought the lead up towards the appearance of the antagonist went on for a little too long, but once it did, the novel got very interesting for a short period. Unfortunately, in addition to the slow pacing at the onset, there were a lot of timeskips towards the end that I felt glossed over some of the more important parts of the story—how did this outsider gain so much of the community's trust, what was the tipping point where people began to take sides, the progression of that desperation and uneasiness.

Would be interested in more of Waubgeshig Rice's novels in the future, especially if there's an even more pointed speculative angle.

em_reads_books's review

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5.0

Not surprised to see that the author is a journalist; the spare prose reminds me of reporting more so than literature. Not as emotionally visceral as the story could have been in another author's hands but matter of factly conveys the gravity of winter settling on the community even before the apocalyptic nature of this particular winter becomes clear. It's such a great addition to and refreshing take on the genre, quiet and community focused, refusing to celebrate the lone hero with a fort and a gun.

cxtriona's review against another edition

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reflective medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

3.25