24 February 2015

Snow Forts & Gold Stars: A Review of Redemption in Indigo, Karen Lord

Is it just me or do Canadians take an inordinate amount of pride in discussing the most mundane of physical states, weather? Not completely disinterested in this effective conversation starter, the inevitable ranting is at best tiresome. Weather is weather, an atmospheric phenomena without feelings, vendettas or desires to ruin your day. Still can't deal, dress warmer, be that person with two coats on, snow pants and a scarf so you can actually venture outdoors maybe even take in a little sun as the icicles blind you with happiness.

So said this girl before our furnace looked the encroaching polar vortex in the face, choosing death over work. We are all quite disappointed in the choice it made.

Parka donned, at my dining room table, breath unnervingly visible, I listen to the sounds of furnace repairmen discussing the most destructive avenues to return the warmth. Drill away boys, drill away. Miraculously my love for winter, while dented has remained through out this heatless nightmare. Living up here requires some backbone. Actually I am an odd bird; the hubby in a very puzzled tone called me nordic yesterday as he watched me gleefully walk through yet another snow-apocalypse. A Newfie, he too comes from strong Canadian winter stock but views it as an active state of aggression designed to destroy his soul. The only thing keeping him sane is cheese. Of course the impending trip to Florida helps. 

Gold star perfect
With warm breezes off of turquoise waters washing over my frozen thoughts,  I continue to struggle with reviewing Redemption in Indigo. Thanks to a certain redhead, I tried Karen Lord's second novel, The Best of All Possible Worlds subsequently losing my cool, proclaiming Lord as the new best thing in SF. Slightly premature, having read only one of her books, I placed Redemption in Indigo on my Reading Pile/2015, diving in this past January and that's right, losing it once again.

I unravelled so completely over this, Lord's acclaimed first fantasy novel that I have been in a panicked state of writer's block since it was lovingly shelved. Sometimes as you read, realization strikes that what you hold is not a book but literature, a work-of-art, a story so well-crafted that you, a lowly unpublished non-writer could never achieve. I wasn't lying when I said I lost it.  

Redemption in Indigo is a fairy tale, somewhat Gaiman-esque, somewhat not, a very clear, very contained story of Paama, the wife of a fool, entrusted with the Chaos Stick that leads her down a path of self-fulfillment and empowerment. This is a story of magic, made real. It wound itself around me like a snake, entrapping me in it's seemingly elementary plot, leaving me spellbound to this day. Recently I read an author discussing techniques to avoid if you want your book review blog to be successful. Enthusiasm, he decided was not only destructive but trite and boring. I have decided to ignore his advice.