Freelance journalist Evie Arnold agrees to cover the emerging conflict between mining magnate Clive Gready, who plans to dig an open-pit mine in the Mikawadizi hills, and La Roche Verte Indian Nation, who intend to stop him. As she watches and records, the conflict spirals from serious to severe to ominous. and finally explodes into an epic battle between good and evil.
Mikawadizi Storms casts bold characters into conflicts bristling with magic and smoldering with contradictory world views.
Every month I review an independently published book by a member of the Magic Realism Books Facebook Group. Indie books get a lot of stick about quality, but in my experience indie magic realist books are often very good indeed. Maybe that is partly because the people on the Facebook Group are genuinely interested in magic realism and want to know more and maybe it is because the nature of magic realism attracts a certain type of writer - one that thinks about his/her work and more generally about the nature of reality. Dennis Vickers falls into both categories.
at the College of Menominee Nation, a tribal college located in north-central Wisconsin and, whilst he's not a member of an Indian Nation, this has clearly influenced the content of his book. The book contrasts the two world views of the Indian community and the white community to the land and nature. This split is literally depicted in the characters Ed and Ward Cormmercant. Edward Commercant is of mixed French/Indian descent and as a result of the conflict between his two backgrounds splits into Ed and Ward - an interesting magic realist concept.
The abuse of the environment by the white mining consortium and its defence by the La Roche Verte Indian Nation and supporters is at the heart of the novel. Early on a contrast is made between the white approach to the land of ripping it open and tearing out the treasures they seek and the Roche Verte who harvested only the silver that fell from the walls of a secret cave. The danger of digging too deep is made clear towards the end of the story when nature takes her revenge, but I will not spoil the ending for you by explaining more.
The central character in the book is the reporter Evie Arnold. Thus we get to hear and see both sides of the story, although Evie shares the writer's bias in favour of the Roche Verte. Evie too is conflicted - in her case in her attitude to her sexuality and having children. This brings her to the magical house of Lotta Moore, where another, this time European, shamanism is active.