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Bowering, George.

Markham (Ont.), Viking, 1987, 266pp, cloth, $19.95, ISBN 0-670-81207-2. Distributed by Penguin Canada. CIP

Grades 12 and up
Reviewed by Michael Freeman

Volume 15 Number 5
1987 November

George Bowerings's semi-satirical novel of the Old West, Canadian-style, moves with all the force and direction of the "tumbling tumbleweed." Although the plot centres around Caprice's search for her brother's murderer, the story meanders through towns and incidents without ever settling on a single theme. A Greek chorus of two cynical Indians pops up now and then to comment on the passing scene. Unfortunately, their conversations, as do most of the other conversations in this seemingly endless, slow-motion adventure, merely resurrect all the jaded western clichés, rather than satirizing them.

The author's imaginative characters, on both sides of the law, arouse the reader's interest on infrequent occasions. However it seems unlikely that the average cowpoke will ride along to the end of the trail, just to see Caprice ride off into the sunset, her tearful beau left behind, philosophizing. Recommended for senior students and staff.

Michael Freeman, Bathurst Heights S.S., North York, Ont.
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