Maud’s Line by Margaret Verble

mauds-line
This is a debut by the author who is  a member of the Cherokee Tribe, a small number who can trace their origins to survivors of the famous or infamous Trail of Tears. It is the poignant and sometimes raw story of a young native American girl struggling with life in the Arkansas Bottoms which were ceded to “Indians” instead of reservations . These lands provided a very meagre hand-to-mouth day-to-day struggle to subsist and while many of them realised land was “gold” others allowed themselves to be cheated out of their holdings and sold to oil companies .The book is bleak  and it shows the decline of the Native lore and language because of the encroachments of civilization . Ironically it was the promise of this affluence not the austerity of  the indian wars which marked the decline of the native American culture. Maud is neither one thing or another, she is an enigma, she can read she likes to read and yearns for more, but everything has a price.
I found this a compelling read so simply written,very like Winters Bone by Daniel Woodrell.

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You can reserve a copy online at South Dublin Libraries’ catalogue here.

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