Monday, March 31

Book Review: The Orenda

Title: The Orenda

Author: Joseph Boyden

Pages: 487

Summary: A visceral portrait of life at a crossroads, The Orenda opens with a brutal massacre and the kidnapping of the young Iroquois Snow Falls, a spirited girl with a special gift. Her captor, Bird, is an elder and one of the Huron Nation’s great warriors and statesmen. It has been years since the murder of his family and yet they are never far from his mind. In Snow Falls, Bird recognizes the ghost of his lost daughter and sees the girl possesses powerful magic that will be useful to him on the troubled road ahead. Bird’s people have battled the Iroquois for as long as he can remember, but both tribes now face a new, more dangerous threat from afar.

Christophe, a charismatic Jesuit missionary, has found his calling amongst the Huron and devotes himself to learning and understanding their customs and language in order to lead them to Christ. An emissary from distant lands, he brings much more than his faith to the new world.

As these three souls dance each other through intricately woven acts of duplicity, small battles erupt into bigger wars and a nation emerges from worlds in flux.

My Rating: 4/10

What I liked/disliked about the book: I'm one of the few who didn't like this book, and the more I think about it, the more I'm finding myself disliking the book. I didn't like the story at all, it started off okay for me but by the time it ended, I was just happy to be finished with the book. I liked the writing style for the most part, but this wasn't the book for me.

The three first person narratives were part of what made this book, a less than satisfactory reading experience, as I felt they were all the same. There was no distinction between the voices, when each had their own perspectives, it was which characters were also present that allowed me to know who was telling the story at the time. I didn't find the emotion or the pull other readers found, with the narrative and the story. I just couldn't connect to the narratives or the characters.

Overall didn't like this one, just wasn't the book for me.

Would I recommend it to read: I would recommend the author. I just don't like this particular book. Writing was well done, didn't like the story. But I seem to be one of the few who didn't absolutely love the book.

What to read next: I'd read the author's other books. The Three Day Road was a lovely story.

Challenges: 100+ Challenge, 2014 Category Challenge, 7th Annual Canadian Book Challenge, Chunkster Challenge, Mount TBR Challenge


  1. 4/10! Whoa. Though I must admit that I'm not even going to pick this book up because I don't think I'll like it. Not every book is for every person.

    1. Yes that's very true. It's received such high praise and little critic, I was expecting something different. Ah well, on to the next book.