The Anger Tree
Original title: L’Arbre De Colère
Red-Girl was born in a First Nation tribe in Canada and is growing up surrounded by boys. She adores hunting, fishing, and running. When she watches the women in her tribe, she is sure she is not made for staying at the camp all day!
An idea starts growing in the Chaman’s mind…the little girl whose birth was shrouded in mystery and who continually surprises her fellow tribe members might be a Mixed-Skin, not like the others…both male and female. Though some accept her as she is, others struggle and repeatedly put her to the test.
The Anger Tree is a story inspired by semi-nomadic First Nation tribes in Canada and a variation on the indigenous notion of “two-spirits.” It is also the story of a girl seeking freedom. It takes us into a culture of familial love, violent rituals, fighting and, ancient traditions and into a community forced to change when Europeans arrived.
Guillaume Aubin’s debut novel beats steadily like the rhythm of a drum and introduces us to a fascinating and unforgettable character.
“At a very young age, I stopped playing with girls my age. I liked boys better. Girls never went into the forest. They imitated their mothers, rocked their little sisters, threw herbs into the soup… I was not interested in any of that. I wanted to run. I wanted to see the trees and the trees behind the trees. I wanted to hide in a dip in the earth and take a herd of bucks by surprise. I wanted to hear the clip-clop of their hoofs, watch beavers build dams, baby bears amuse themselves under the watchful eyes of their mothers. I wanted to be surrounded by animals – not just dead, skinned ones, their meat dried to get us through the cold days. How long will this go on? How long will I be a disturbance to the world order? How long will I be able to keep avoiding being a woman?”