Follow the Author
The Backbone of the World (Trespass collection) Kindle Edition
An American Indian woman’s past and future collide in unthinkable ways in this richly imagined short story of deep secrets and Lovecraftian horrors by a New York Times bestselling author.
Millie Two Bears lives alone in a trailer in the heart of the Blackfeet Nation in Montana. Since her husband went to jail, she’s been on the outs with the reservation. And it’s not just people she has to contend with. Now the prairie dogs are moving in on her patch of land. When a strange woman comes into Millie’s life, and Millie’s rodent war escalates, a fateful confrontation with vengeance, secrets, and survival is just underfoot.
Stephen Graham Jones’s The Backbone of the World is part of Trespass, a collection of wild stories about animal instincts, human folly, and survival from award-winning, bestselling authors. Read or listen to each in a single sitting.
About the Author
Stephen Graham Jones is the New York Times bestselling author of My Heart Is a Chainsaw, The Only Good Indians, and Mongrels, among others. He is the recipient of the Mark Twain American Voice in Literature Award, the LA Times Ray Bradbury Prize for Science Fiction, Fantasy & Speculative Fiction, three Bram Stoker Awards, and two Shirley Jackson Awards, among many others.
- ASIN : B09P1CBCBN
- Publisher : Amazon Original Stories (Feb. 24 2022)
- Language : English
- File size : 9220 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 54 pages
- Best Sellers Rank: #46,038 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Top review from Canada
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
Also being Native, I am drawn to all things surrounding Native culture.
This was also my introduction to the author. So I had many great reasons to be happy going into this.
It was kind of weird though. Not gonna lie. It was also kind of genius. You really have no clue what's happening until the very end, and then you totally get everything.
I loved Frog. She was a character.
I really like those kind of stories. Sadly, they can often be the ones you see other people DNFing, because they don't keep going they miss the brilliance of the whole tale.
I look forward to reading more from this author.
Top reviews from other countries
Frequently considered pests or vermin in North America, prairie dogs have been much maligned. This story taps into that and takes it a step further by, in a sinister manner, making them into something more threatening. Events also begin with the old adage they are responsible for laming horses. However, as the story progresses, they become more sympathetic and to some degree, albeit in a warped dark way, there are echoes at their links to the ecosystem.
With it being told from the perspective of Mille Two Bears as she deals with her fears and worries and her sense of alienation from the community, the story has an emotional intensity to it as her method against the prairie dogs become more extreme. This works well alongside the sense of mystery that develops as things become more than just an incursion of prairie dogs.
The arrival of the enigmatic Frog and Millie’s growing suspicions of her as she appears to know more about events than should be possible, adds to the intrigue and growing sense of danger.
It’s a well written story that comes to a satisfying conclusion whilst leaving several elements nicely uncertain. It also plays a bit with the old ‘Indian burial ground’ idea.
Who knows where this all'll go, and how it will along the way. These questions and more, yeah, they're tying brain knots in Millie Two Bears, tangling her heartstrings.
Millie Two Bears, she's having a time and a half.
Seems every entity, known and un-, is haunting her. Her imprisoned husband, the two first graders he mowed down, a questionable lodger, and, yes, very much yes, the prairie dogs. Just a handful or two of prairie dogs. Right? Surely. Must be.
What begins as merely taking care of the land will guide Millie to a place, a heart, a mind, a home she'll never want to leave.
Jones shows us the backbone of the world, takes us there, drops us off and goes, "here you go, best of luck," but on his way out, just as he's about to disappear, he nods ever so slightly to the way out, through.
The reader doesn’t have a lot of time to think and ponder what’s happening. The main protagonist is very believable and I enjoyed joining her on this quest of discovery and, I suppose, good fortune and redemption. Another story of how wisened women can be very resourceful when an opportunity is presented. LOL!
The story is engaging and, as always, the author informs the reader of another facet of tribal customs and how Indigenous Americans try to always honor and have learned to communicate with the land. But he throws in a delicious little twist to cap off a solid narrative!