While Vizenor's ( Griever ) long-out-of-print peculiar fantasy generally draws more from Indian mythology than from realism, some of its material (such as a reference to Bernadette Devlin) has become dated since its original publication in 1978 as Darkness in Saint Louis: Bearheart . The backdrop is an America that has exhausted its oil supply and descended into chaos. Driven from their Minnesota home when the cedar trees Proude guarded are commandeered for fuel, Proude Cedarfair and his wife, Rosina, set out for New Mexico. On the way they gain assorted companions, including Benito Saint Plumero, who killed a man for love of a female park statue; Pio Wissakodewinini, who was punished for rape by being surgically changed into a woman; and Pure Gumption, a dog with healing powers. They meet dangers, such as the evil gambler, who wagers gasoline against any gamester's life; food fascists who carve up ``witches'' for restaurant fare; and a horde of people who, in the chemically poisoned environment, have been born crippled. Bestiality and necrophilia also appear in Vizenor's mythical tale, which may have been daring when first published, but now is puerile. Vizenor also wrote Crossbloods (see review above). ( May )
Reviewed on: 01/01/1990 Release date: 01/01/1990 Genre: Fiction
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