[Reading] ➾ Touch ➵ Alexi Zentner – Pdfr25.co

Touch In Sawgamet, A North Woods Boomtown Gone Bust, The Cold Of Winter Breaks The Glass Of The Schoolhouse Thermometer, And The Dangers Of Working In The Cuts Are Overshadowed By The Mysteries And Magic Lurking In The Woods Stephen, A Pastor, Is At Home On The Eve Of His Mother S Funeral, Thirty Years After The Mythic Summer His Grandfather Returned To The Town In Search Of His Beloved But Long Dead Wife And Like His Grandfather, Stephen Is Forced To Confront The Losses Of His PastTouch Introduces You To A World Where Monsters And Witches Oppose Singing Dogs And Golden Caribou, Where The Living And The Dead Part And Meet Again In The Crippling Beauty Of Winter And The Surreal Haze Of Summer

10 thoughts on “Touch

  1. says:

    A very good book.Alexi Zentner s 2012 short novel about four generations of a family in western Canada in the late 1800s reminded me of a northern One Hundred Years of Solitude While it does not have the scope or breadth of Gabriel Garcia Marquez masterpiece, Zentner s inspired prose was a great pleasure to read.Most striking is Zentner s use of magic realism with the raw edges of paranormal fantasy as he introduces elements of Inuit myth and legend into his frontier tale With language, setting and themes reminiscent of early Jack London and Algernon Blackwood, Zentner has crafted a tale of brutal extremes as a family settles and lays claim to a village in Canada s wild west.As Stephen s mother lays dying, the man looks back over his lifetime and before, tracing stories of his father and grandfather as the family settled a gold mining town and stayed past the boom and made a living logging and supplying the miners before 1900 Revisiting the family legends of his past, Stephen draws the reader into his tale, describing a cold and pitiless landscape that passes a shadow s width from another primal world of Native American folk tales.Perhaps most compelling is Zentner s meticulous distinction between western faith and the unforgiving representation of northern extremes and fable Stephen and his step father are clergy in this harsh landscape, where a moment off guard will lead to death The author demonstrates the paper thin veneer of faith against this harsh backdrop while also addressing the psychological and metaphysical juxtaposition with Inuit legend.Highly recommended.

  2. says:

    It s funny, I usually start out my reviews with a short little blurb of my own just rehashing the particulars of the story With Touch though, this story was so all over the place that I can t adequately explain it s basis it simply eludes me The official summary feels deceiving and makes it sound ripe with potential but it never lived up it, that s for sure I truly feel as if I ve been hoodwinked I blame the stunning cover shakes fist But honestly, I recall going through this magical realism stage and added practically every book tagged as such This is one of them I m thinking that if the author isn t Sarah Addison Allen, then I apparently don t care much for magical realism It should be said that according to the Reading Group Discussion questions yeah, I read them in hopes that it would clarify some things I was wrong this is considered along the lines of mythical realism as it incorporates Inuit mythology While I could say that the incorporation of mythological elements may give it a smidgen of credibility in comparison to strange magical stuff happening for no apparent reason, it was a poorly managed addition to the story The story is centered around this small town in the Canadian wilderness which came into existence only after gold was discovered It s a story about survival But then out of nowhere some strange creature would pop up and it was like mental whiplash Like the mahaha actual creatures name, I wasn t just laughing They tickle you until all your breath is gone Leave you dead, but with a smile Holy freaky shit That s the stuff of nightmares But I was intrigued and wanted to know so I googled this scary beasty with the funny name The page I found described the mahaha in basically the exact same way the author did in the book Like it was copied And that kind of killed the cool out of it To me, magical realism IS the story, it s incorporated and intertwined into the very fabric of the story But all the magical elements in Touch felt like a strange and ill fitting addition that was added as an afterthought to an otherwise contemporary tale of survival The writing style itself, apart from the actual story, was lacking a much needed finesse The tale was not linear and bounced all over the place without any indication as to whether we were back in the present tense or still being told the story of the past The point of view was a poor choice as well The grandson is the narrator retelling his grandfather s story Why not just have the grandfather tell his own story Even though the grandfather told him his story it seemed unlikely that he would know as many details as he did There were also strange leaps to other characters and telling the story through there eyes which definitely made it implausible as his grandfather wasn t even present in those instances While the writing reflected definite potential, it was too unpolished for me to enjoy I can t remember the last time if ever I finished a novel and honestly had absolutely no clue the purpose or meaning of it So much of this story was too farcical in its inconceivability for me to garner any sort of entertainment Many people have lauded this book for it s eerie, haunting qualities but ultimately this left me chilled for all the wrong reasons.

  3. says:

    Plucked this slim novel on a whim from the new books table at the library knew absolutely nothing about book or author A happy happenstance it is one of the most memorable books I ve read in a while Alexi Zentner eases you into the narrative, enchants with superb story telling, and introduces the magical elements slowly and subtly as the plot progresses A plain spoken and earnest narrator makes it easy for to suspend disbelief and get lost in the vivid and mesmirizing landscape, characters, story.The setting itself is a major character a harsh, even deadly landscape populated by ghosts and demons I did look quickly at some of the other reviews of this book and saw that severalcomplained the author broke the first rule of writing show, don t tell But rules are meant to be broken And this is, after all, a story about story telling about the power and intimacy of oral histories passed down from generation to generation How else would you convey that except in the form of a fairy like tale

  4. says:

    Multi generational family drama mixed together with Inuit mythology, which was fascinating.Google a qalupalik to be slightly creeped out.

  5. says:

    Touch is the sort of novel that Salman Rushdie might have produced if he d been raised in the Canadian wilderness rather than India and England Alexi Zentner s descriptive writing is as evocative and passionate as Rushdie s Both authors stories are rooted in the real world but contain subtle fantasy elements that are not too far fetched to be believable Zentner s biggest strength as a writer is his ability to describe scene, which in Touch is the forest around the Canadian town of Sawgamet Like much true art, Zentner s writing is often paradoxical he describes wild weather and merciless winters with moving poignancy the people who inhabit the forest are, on the surface, as hardy as the wilderness itself, but their toughness masks a deeper humanity and fragility magical beings such as golden caribou, shapeshifters and sea witches are, while fantastical, anchored in the very real landscape of the forest The novel s fantasy elements are introduced with amazing subtlety, their existence not so much stated as implied It is left to the reader to decide whether these magical phenomena are real or projected from the minds of characters influenced by local Native American lore Zentner is a masterful storyteller whose evocative descriptions engage all the reader s senses While reading Touch, I saw in my mind s eye vivid images of the town of Sawgamet, the mill, the ever present river and forest which sustain life for and take life from the people who inhabit the region As a debut novel, Touch is a monumental achievement It is than just a book that beautifully describes three generations of one family struggling against the elements Touch contains a moral appropriate today than ever when humans take from the forest, the forest also takes back.

  6. says:

    Touch, by Alexi Zentner is the kind of novel I want to discuss with a friend Though I loved the lyrical style and mythical realism author s definition of this story set in the harsh wilderness of northern British Columbia, I have come away with questions and may not truly understand what happened here My plan is to go back and listen to the author interviews again and see what I can learn.There are some books that I am better off reading in large chunks rather than the bits and pieces that life sometimes allows This is one of them A debut, Touch is only 264 pages, so not overly long and could be read in a day or two by most readers My week of chopped up late night reading might have done some injustice to the whole I found myself going back and re reading to get it Set in the fictional town of Sawgamet, the narrator, Stephen, an Anglican pastor has come home with his family to await the imminent death of his mother As he sits by her bedside he fills us in on the history of his forebears and the settlement of Sawgamet by his grandfather, Jeannot Jeannot walks across the country with a dog, stolen from a witch, and establishes Sawgamet, eventually leaving this gone bust logging town only to come back later to raise his wife from the dead Touch is a multi layered, multi generational tale, told in present day and flashbacks of story telling to Stephen by both his father and grandfather The story begins as Stephen tells us about his father, the foreman of this logging community, a job he received after a logging accident left him with no other option The winter Stephen is ten is not unusual for Sawgamet, cold and freezing So cold that if you chop a hole in the river for running water, it quickly freezes over This plays out to a a horrific accident that changes the course of Stephens life and of those around him This scene is quite powerful and one I won t forget and yet, this may not be the most troublesome scene for some There is to come as winter digs in with all its brutal harshness in another piece of the story Touch is told much like the best of folklore and I was fascinated by the creatures introduced here They are all a bit creepy but somehow accepted, the mahaha and wehtiko, the ijirait, the adlet , were all new to me The Qallupilluit, were somewhat familiar from a story by Robert Munsch These are female monsters who grab children who go to close to the water or sea without their parents Unless I m getting confused I think Zentner gives Qallupilluit different powers I mentioned that somehow these creatures are accepted and for me hold some delight They are much like the characters my father would phantom in storytelling to raise the hairs on my neck as a child the evil that lurks in the dark and might gobble me up if I was not a good girl or watchful.In addition to some very interesting human characters, the cold harsh, snowy winters are also key players This weather sets the tone and is very atmospheric Spanning a time frame of the late 1800 s to the years of World War II, this slim novel covers many topics, logging fascinating , gold, family, truth, love, marriage, and survival It is about how stories are handed down from generation to generation and how those stories change in the telling, leaving us with questions of what is truth and what is myth The author feels most stories start as truth and somehow get retold with something of the truth remaining I agree Touch somehow escaped me until I heard an interview with Zentner on Shelagh Rogers on The Next Chapter I immediately sought it out and am glad I did.

  7. says:

    Excellent protrayal of what it must have been like for the first of the European immigrants to move to the further reaches of Western Canada during the times of the several gold rushes It s not about the populating of the land It s not about the finding of gold It s about the relationship of three generations of a family with an extremely harsh, deadly environment and the spirits and creatures of an unknown land It s a very original style of telling that I have a hard time classifying It has elements of paranormal or perhaps fantasy or perhaps myth or perhaps one of a couple other categories but I didn t feel like it fit anywhere Those elements were important parts of the telling and important parts of the lives of the people but they weren t focal points at all They also didn t seem so paranormal or fantastical in context They seemed a true part of the history I had a hard time eventually even considering them as myth I m considering this as pure historical fiction and one of the most interesting that I ve read This is going to be reread and that s going to happen when I can read it straight through in a day or two Two thirds of the way through I was regretting having had to take too many breaks during the reading and stretching it out to over a week Something about it seems to require remaining continually immersed in the story.Anyone interested in or studying the earliest expansion west of the European immigrants on this continent has to read this to get an amazing feel for the realities of the time and place.

  8. says:

    Found in my mailbox on April 24 12 B day surprise from DJO Started reading this morning Got all nostalgic with memories of my father and the sight of him standing on the log booms he brought into our bay on the way to the sawmill logs that would be made into lumber for the new home he built for us when I was 6.April 28, 2012 I finished this book yesterday, but part way through my reading, I had tweeted on Twitter that I was examining my fingertips for gold dust at every turn of the page While a bit of an exaggeration, the truth is I wouldn t have been surprised to find some This is a magical book In fact this book, like all of my books, will become a BookCrossing book and will one day be left out in the wild for someone to find If my plan works, the next person to read this book WILL find gold dust on their fingers or maybe on their pants and wonderI happen to have a little pot of 23 carat gold leaf I use to decorate my baking on special occasions I intend to use a bit to dust the pages of this book In all likelihood, I will never know who finds the book or whether they even noticed the gold dust but it tickles me to think I might add to the magic of this book for someone to be continued when I finish doing my taxes grrrr

  9. says:

    C est le c ur un peu fissur que je referme ce sublime roman d Alexi Zentner Au cours de cette lecture, j ai eu l impression d tre devant un feu de chemin e couter le narrateur raconter ses souvenirs et ceux de son p re et de son grand p re D incroyables souvenirs qui m lent la terrible duret des hivers dans le Grand Nord et l amour romantique et filial qui r chauffe les tres lorsque la neige emp che toute activit Certaines de ces histoires sont douloureuses et violentes, et certaines sont pleines de magie J aurais tant aim en lire plus, ne pas quitter cette famille qui, g n ration apr s g n ration, fait preuve d une r silience hors du commun face la puissance de la nature Une p pite d couvrir absolument.

  10. says:

    Un r cit qui nous transporte dans le froid du Canada, o les chercheurs d or et les bucherons se m lent aux cr atures myst rieuses des bois et des fleuves Une histoire toute mignonne, emplie de la beaut de la nature du Canada, qui m a beaucoup plu.