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Four Souls (P.S.)
 
 

Four Souls (P.S.) [Kindle Edition]

Louise Erdrich
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Review

‘She is a writer of stunning prose. At a certain point in reading ‘Four Souls’ I realized it was useless to keep underlining the passages I wanted to quote – every page was marked. ‘Four Souls’ is not only a beautiful and absorbing novel but an extremely timely one.’ Boston Globe

‘Full of satisfying yet unexpected twists. The book begins with clean, spare prose, but finishes in gorgeous incantation and poetry.’ New York Times

‘Ms Erdrich is such a gifted writer.’ New York Times Book Review

‘A triumph of voice enriched by American Indian lore … Erdrich stands alone.’ San Francisco Chronicle

Product Description

After taking her mother's name, Four Souls, for strength, the strange, compelling Fleur Pillager walks from her Ojibwe reservation to the cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul. She seeks restitution from and revenge on the lumber baron who has stripped her reservation. But revenge is never simple, and her intentions are complicated by her dangerous compassion for the man who wronged her.

This P.S. edition features an extra 16 pages of insights into the book, including author interviews, recommended reading, and more.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 289 KB
  • Print Length: 240 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins e-books; Reprint edition (13 Oct 2009)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000FCJYEG
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #153,646 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Louise Erdrich is one of the most gifted, prolific, and challenging of American novelists. Her fiction reflects aspects of her mixed heritage: German through her father, and French and Ojibwa through her mother. She is the author of many novels, the first of which, Love Medicine, won the National Book Critics Circle Award and the last of which, The Round House, won the National Book Award for Fiction in 2012. She lives in Minnesota.

Customer Reviews

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3.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a beautiful expansion of Erdrich's created world 14 July 2004
Format:Hardcover
Fleur Pillager is one of Louise Erdrich's legendary characters. Fleur is legendary within the world Erdrich has created as well as being an iconic character of Erdrich's work as a whole. "Four Souls" continues the story of Fleur that was begun in Erdrich's second novel "Tracks". Having lost her land to the white developers when Margaret Rushes Bear chose to use the money to save her own son Nector's piece of the land rather than Fleur's, Fleur Pillager walked away from the reservation. She walked until she was exhausted, and then she kept walking until she reached the Cities. She stopped, as if she was drawn, in front of a house that was hiring a cleaning woman. The house belonged to John James Mauser (a family name you should recognize from "Tales of Burning Love"). Mauser is the developer who purchased Fleur's land and she seeks to exact revenge on Mauser. Fleur's revenge is not the typical revenge where the person is quickly killed. No. Fleur's revenge has Fleur become part of the household so that she can build up Mauser enough that he can sufficiently know what he is going to lose when Fleur decides it is time to take her revenge.
The novel is narrated by two characters. The first is the trickster, Nanapush. Nanapush tells the story of Fleur as he knows it (at no time is Fleur the narrator the story), so as he tells Fleur's story, he also tells his own. The other narrator is Polly Elizabeth. Polly Elizabeth is the sister of Mauser's wife. She is able to tell more of the story of Fleur's arrival to the household and what the impact there was. She also reveals a bit more of her family's history and that of Mauser's history. In Erdrich's world, everything is interconnected.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Four Souls 11 Aug 2012
Format:Paperback
Just to balance the reviews, reading this book at the moment and loving it, funny, beautifully observed and a great story line so far.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Four souls never arrived! 17 Feb 2010
Format:Paperback
I would love to rate it but it never turned up and i still don't know why!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.6 out of 5 stars  23 reviews
45 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Four Souls adds to the richness of Erdrich's world 22 Jun 2004
By Joe Sherry - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Fleur Pillager is one of Louise Erdrich's legendary characters. Fleur is legendary within the world Erdrich has created as well as being an iconic character of Erdrich's work as a whole. "Four Souls" continues the story of Fleur that was begun in Erdrich's second novel "Tracks". Having lost her land to the white developers when Margaret Rushes Bear chose to use the money to save her own son Nector's piece of the land rather than Fleur's, Fleur Pillager walked away from the reservation. She walked until she was exhausted, and then she kept walking until she reached the Cities. She stopped, as if she was drawn, in front of a house that was hiring a cleaning woman. The house belonged to John James Mauser (a family name you should recognize from "Tales of Burning Love"). Mauser is the developer who purchased Fleur's land and she seeks to exact revenge on Mauser. Fleur's revenge is not the typical revenge where the person is quickly killed. No. Fleur's revenge has Fleur become part of the household so that she can build up Mauser enough that he can sufficiently know what he is going to lose when Fleur decides it is time to take her revenge.
The novel is narrated by two characters. The first is the trickster, Nanapush. Nanapush tells the story of Fleur as he knows it (at no time is Fleur the narrator the story), so as he tells Fleur's story, he also tells his own. The other narrator is Polly Elizabeth Gheen. Polly Elizabeth is the sister of Mauser's wife. She is able to tell more of the story of Fleur's arrival to the household and what the impact there was. She also reveals a bit more of her family's history and that of Mauser's history. In Erdrich's world, everything is interconnected.
I have to be upfront in saying that Louise Erdrich has long been my favorite author, and it is with great anticipation that I look forward to the publication of a new novel. "Four Souls" did not disappoint me. Rather than having a simple plot, Louise Erdrich and "Four Souls" tells a story of Fleur Pillager, of revenge (in many forms), of love, and Erdrich continues to craft out a world that feels very real. Each volume only serves to add to the richness and the color of The Little No Horse Reservation and the characters which inhabit and intersect with it. This is a very lyrical (and perhaps spiritual) story and while it may not be the type of story that every reader is looking for, it is one that I love.
-Joe Sherry
20 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Yet another stellar novel from Louise Erdrich 30 Aug 2004
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I've read most of the author's works and while I would not say this is my favorite, I have to say that she has matured so much as an author over the years that this is a must read book. I particularly like how she shares imagery and concepts in this book without feeling the need to explain them to the non-Anishinaabe audience, and potentially interrupting the poetry of the work itself. - It was amazing how she brought back to mind things I knew and had forgotten, simply through the force of her writing. The greatest impact for me was the effect the book had even 4 days later - the themes of this book are both universal and incredible. Thank you for such an outstanding book!
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Fascinating and Enigmatic Tale 24 July 2004
By Bookreporter - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
There is no revenge like success, as the saying goes, and Fleur Pillager is out for both. She adopts her mother's name, Four Souls, and sets foot on a mission to seek restitution from the robber baron who has stripped bare the Minnesota forests her Ojibwe ancestors called home.

As the scheme to avenge her family unfolds, Fleur proves to be no ordinary woman. She is so complex, in fact, that it takes several narrators to tell her story, a device that makes FOUR SOULS a fascinating and enigmatic tale of the myths, sorrows and passions of a vanishing civilization.

There is old Nanapush, tribal elder, who observes as Fleur launches her private incursion against the ailing World War I veteran, John James Mauser, lumber baron and social scion of Minneapolis society. Polly Elizabeth, Mr. Mauser's sister-in-law, who runs the household, hires Fleur as a housemaid and laundress. She seems efficient and is seemingly everywhere and nowhere, all at once. Little does Polly Elizabeth know how Fleur will change the lives of all within the walls of the Mauser mansion.

Fleur discovers that her nemesis is far too ill to thoroughly appreciate his demise at her hand, so she sets out to cure him of odd maladies from World War I wounds. Her tender mercies lead instead to marriage to Mauser, and as Polly Elizabeth says, "Nothing in the look of her and the ignorant silence told me she could possibly end up connected to me." Nor could Polly Elizabeth or John James Mauser ever imagine where that connection would lead.

FOUR SOULS evolves slowly and as magically as the mists on a summer morning pond. Louise Erdrich, who wrote the bestseller TRACKS, which is a precursor to FOUR SOULS, seems to know the minds, voices and ways of the Ojibwe Indians. The shift in narrative voice is sometimes confusing as the transitions are not always obvious, but clarity is restored as you fall into the cadence of the various characters. All are well defined and drawn, and FOUR SOULS haunts you with its aura of irony and fulfillment --- fulfillment that doesn't always come in the manner in which it is sought.

--- Reviewed by Roz Shea
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The spirit and history 20 July 2004
By Thelma C. Johnson - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
There are very few novels written about Indians with actual Indian authors. I believe Louise Erdrich to be the best. She not only tells a story that is witty, powerful, and compelling, but she draws the reader into the mind and culture of Indians, especially of the Chippewa of whom she writes. Fred Manfred and Oliver LaFarge, to mention two, have written great novels about Indians; and certainly Tony Hillerman has given us insight into the religion and life styles of the Southwestern Indians, especially the Navajos, but these writers are still outsiders. Erdrich is lyrical and brilliant and tells her story as an insider without bias or sentimentality. This book and others of hers should be required reading by every student of American History. Facts about treaties and population may be interesting in their own way, but they don't say anything about the soul of a people.
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Next in the superb Ojibwe saga & it's mighty fine reading 26 Jun 2004
By KatPanama - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Oh boy, oh boy, Erdrich is out with a new one: Four Souls and it's a mighty fine read. This one focusses on Fleur Pillager and it's sly, witty and graceful as well as a bit of a thriller. I wonder about that surname, Pillager. Fluer isn't particularly easy to like and don't think Erdrich meant her to be -- which makes her AND the novel all the more interesting. Interesting trivia bit: it's shorter than usual for Erdrich; I haven't decided yet if that's good or not. Fortunately I don't have to as there will be another along soon, thank goodness.
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Popular Highlights

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&quote;
Time is the water in which we live, and we breathe it like fish. It’s hard to swim against the current. &quote;
Highlighted by 14 Kindle users
&quote;
For what is a man, what are we all, but bits of time caught for a moment in a tangle of blood, bones, skin, and brain? She was time. Mauser was time. I am a sorry bit of time myself. We are time’s containers. Time pours into us and then pours out again. In between the two pourings we live our destiny. &quote;
Highlighted by 10 Kindle users
&quote;
To sew is to pray. Men don’t understand this. They see the whole but they don’t see the stitches. They don’t see the speech of the creator in the work of the needle. We mend. We women turn things inside out and set things right. We salvage what we can of human garments and piece the rest into blankets. Sometimes our stitches stutter and slow. Only a woman’s eye can tell. Other times, the tension in the stitches might be too tight because of tears, but only we know what emotion went into the making. Only women can hear the prayer. &quote;
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