Sunday, September 6, 2015

THE REVENANT by Michael Punke

While reading this exciting western adventure, I was constantly reminded of how many things we take for granted today. Little things like blankets, lighters, automatic rifles, and those two words that kept
running through my mind while reading: ANTI. BIOTICS.

The book is based on the famous true story of Hugh Glass, the frontiersman working as a trapper for the Rocky Mountain Fur Company in 1823 gathering beaver pelts along the Missouri River. Things go south fast when he gets ripped apart by a grizzly bear while hunting. It's almost a sure thing that Glass will croak, so he doesn't take it personally when his colleagues abandon him, but when they steal his beloved knife and rifle, AND his flint and steel? Now that's totally unforgivable! Against all odds, Glass crawls across hundreds of miles of treacherous countryside to bring retribution to those that wronged him. 

I'd never heard of the story of Hugh Glass and I'm totally in awe of how much of a badass he was. The story is sometimes hard to believe; I mean damn the dude's throat was nearly severed and he couldn't walk! And with Michael Punke's well-conceived embellishments and dramatics, it really elevates to an even more extraordinary story. It's not only a gripping tale of classic revenge, but also of survival literally against all odds and about the extent that one man's determination can go. It's well-researched and its great sense of place was very transportive. And Punke uses an omniscient POV that's great for historical fiction that really gives the reader more info about the world and more historical scope beyond the immediate story. I was not only entertained but I also learned a lot and I was inspired to jump on the Interwebs and learn even more. And that's what historical fiction is all about, right?
"The frustrating necessity of delay was like water on the hot iron of his determination—hardening it, making it unmalleable. He vowed to survive, if for no other reason than to visit vengeance on the men who betrayed him."

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