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Canadians are very proud to be a multicultural nation; book review

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Feb 14, 2014   #1
The Last Crossing #1 National Bestseller by Guy Vanderhaeghe.
Canadians are very proud to be a multicultural nation. In 2017, Canada will be turning one hundred and fifty years old and to show your appreciation we are asking all recent immigrants and citizens of Canada to read The Last Crossing by Guy Vanderhaeghe. Fort Whoop-Up border was located between Saskatchewan and Montana which evolves into the cities we see today. Learning historical information about Canada is important to note. In 1871 when Canada was becoming it's own identity new settlers from European saw Canada as the New World. What type of people traveled on this frontier where they come across the land to the Western landscape of Canada? The Western highlights cultural differences, struggles between Aboriginals peoples, and European encounters with Aboriginal people is well described throughout The Last Crossing plot.

The main characters of the novel are travelling into Canada. The non-established landscape was full of wild animals, Aboriginal people, and whiskey posts. This story of conflict is entwined tightly to the story of love. Three brothers known for different qualities, an intellect (Charles), ex-military officer (Addington), and an idealist (Simon) all form different relationships with their father, Henry Gaunt, an English gentleman. Therefore the theme of the story has men with money and power come to Canada with a purpose which also stays true to the historical facts because men have a commanding influence in this times. The social arrangement and the treatment of women gets portrayed how women play a less powerful position.

First, Henry is a father figure to these young men who's character flourishes with success from thinking ahead by constructing and owning railways. His businessman lifestyles gives the boys a promising future, but comes with the negative outcome where Henry thinks people are plotting against him. Henry does not have an active role in the book but with his connections to his sons they believe they should please their father.

Throughout the book, there is a mix of love and hate. Simon's perceptive about issues like religion and self is very innocent which makes him different from the other brothers, so Simon leaves to explore his identity and finds an understanding from others. The "other" is explained by Europeans through aboriginal group (non-Europeans)which in this case are in the Crow people. Different aboriginals groups are also interacting in this time period. Unfortunately, the majority of white people's treatment to the aboriginals was not a high priority at this time. White man's superiority role is displayed through military examples, exploitation, and oppression. To find Simon, Addington and Charles go searching in Canada with the attitude that their tradition is best.

Before the Gaunt brothers start their quest to find Simon, Addington and Charles must find a good guide to help them. Jerry Potts was a half breed with Blackfoot and an English background. Jerry Potts has experience with the Hudson Bay company and knowledge about the Blackfoot way of life. His blood representation is important because other people define him by his parents. There is great tension between Aboriginals and Englishman for they are seen as rivals, so children to both ethnics feel unaccepted and out of place no matter which side of the clash they take on.

To continue, Charles comes into a town trying to locate Potts and then several more characters are introduced. The people he meets that are most dominant in the story is Lucy and Custis. Lucy asks to join Charles to travel up North because she wants revenge on the people she suspects killed her sister, and to find her lazy husband who abandoned her. Custis a civil war veteran goes chasing after Lucy, where Aloysius follows Custis. The author introduces the reader to all the characters through a creative narrator style. Before writing novels Guy Vanderhaege wrote many successful short stories, so his unique writing had diverse characters that have the ability to speak keeps readers on their toes.

For example, the detailed descriptions in this book come from many points of views, and several characters thoughts and feelings, which makes the story complex and realistic. The external and internal contrasts the characters face represents human nature and the behaviour of a variety of people. From the beginning of the book readers are at the edge of their seats to find out: Does Simon survive? Who murders Lucy's sister Madge (who owns that belt)? Why is this character acting this way?

Finally the story has rationalism, morals, and passion. Any reader who likes justice and karma will like what happens to the main characters of this book. Furthermore, the novel opens with a flashback and the story comes full circle. The characters are striving for individualism, freedom, and equality. In different ways theses qualities are obtained by the characters. The historical reality to Aboriginal and English deaths needs to be remembered. Significantly the attributes of the past is what Canada is trying to strive for today.

Humans intelligence, psychology, and emotional values are learned and adaptation occurs depending on the situation because peoples perceptive on the same thing is differential which is clearly portrayed in this novel. People have different personalities dependent, broken down, rebellion, coward, and so forth through different characters and pieces of yourself can be seen. This book was written about the Victorian romanticism era, but can still be understandable to today's time. This symbolic interpretation of the Canada shows a meshing of two worlds where change is unacceptable, but learning about these problems from the past helped shape Canada. To where we have reached a time where Aboriginals are respected and other immigrants are welcomed into Canada.

thank you so much for all your help, just wanting to make sure my grammar is all good

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