STARLIGHT, by Richard Wagamese, McClelland & Stewart/PenguinRandomHouse


Richard Wagamese was one of Canada’s foremost Native authors and storytellers. He worked as a professional writer since 1979. He was a newspaper columnist and reporter, radio and television broadcaster and producer, documentary producer and the author of twelve titles from major Canadian publishers.

The final novel from Richard Wagamese, the bestselling and beloved author of Indian Horse and Medicine Walk, centres on an abused woman on the run who finds refuge on a farm owned by an Indigenous man with wounds of his own. A profoundly moving novel about the redemptive power of love, mercy, and compassion–and the land’s ability to heal us.

Frank Starlight has long settled into a quiet life working his remote farm, but his contemplative existence comes to an abrupt end with the arrival of Emmy, who has committed a desperate act so she and her child can escape a harrowing life of violence. Starlight takes in Emmy and her daughter to help them get back on their feet, and this accidental family eventually grows into a real one. But Emmy’s abusive ex isn’t content to just let her go. He wants revenge and is determined to hunt her down.
Starlight was unfinished at the time of Richard Wagamese’s death, yet every page radiates with his masterful storytelling, intense humanism, and insights that are as hard-earned as they are beautiful. With astonishing scenes set in the rugged backcountry of the B.C. Interior, and characters whose scars cut deep even as their journey toward healing and forgiveness lifts us, Starlight is a last gift to readers from a writer who believed in the power of stories to save us.

Out August, 2018


I received this book in exchange for my honest review.

Wagamese was such a strong, deeply souled author. His writing reflects this exquisitely with strongly fleshed out, complicated characters, perfectly described settings that draw you into his world and a deep understanding of human nature.

In “Starlight,” Wagamese approaches hard-hitting topics like abuse, rape, human cruelty, incest and homelessness.  He clearly dissects what it means to be a man and what constitutes a coward.  He also delves into his concepts of family and what truly builds a family and nurtures it into a beautiful thing.

Wagamese had one of those styles of writing that will be sorely missed. His ability to dig deep into the inner workings of male emotion and ego was extraordinary.  He is and will always remain one of my favorite.

I gave this book:



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