By Donna Milner
Ahead of River, every little thing was once excellent. . . . turning out to be up on a Canadian dairy farm lower than miles from the yankee border, fifteen-year-old Natalie Ward understands little of the skin international. yet her loving, close-knit relations is the envy of old and young alike within the within sight city of Atwood. Natalie adores her 3 brothers—especially Boyer, the eldest, whom she idolizes. yet every thing adjustments one sizzling July afternoon in 1966 whilst a long-haired stranger appears to be like at their door—a soft-spoken American, a Vietnam battle resister, who will try out the family's morals and ideology, and set in movement catastrophic occasions that might shatter Natalie's relationships with these she such a lot dearly loves.
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Extra resources for After River: A Novel
He still runs the old mine but spends most of his time Making up for the Old Bull Moose. ’ When I was finished I couldn’t tell if the laughter that rippled beneath the applause was at the words, or me, but Boyer’s smile was enough. After the concert, the wise men in their father’s bathrobes, the angels with their tinselled halos, Christmas trees, stars, and sugarplums, waddled off the stage. I followed the flow to the back of the now brightly lit room where parents, teachers and performers milled among tables laden with cookies, cakes, and cups of punch.
I slip the return ticket into my pocket as he takes me into his arms. ‘I feel like I’m losing you,’ he murmurs into my hair. ‘I’m just anxious to get going,’ I say and start to pull away. ‘Not just this morning,’ he says. ’ He releases me, then steps back with a crooked smile. He holds his arms out in an open-handed gesture of surrender. He won’t keep me against my will, I know, but he’ll do his best to interrupt this dance of leaving. That is Vern. His strength is what has kept me with him this long, his strength in being able to let go.
He captured my hand in a firm grasp, where it went limp from the heat of this stranger’s skin. I stood there frozen, tongue-tied, suddenly feeling conscious of my childish ponytail, my jeans and loose T-shirt, and my tomboyish looks, of which up until that moment I had been proud. I jerked my hand away and held it behind my back. My mother hurried to fill the silence. ‘Well, now,’ she said. ‘Well, River, come with me and I’ll show you your room above the dairy. ’ Mom’s sure-fire solution to everything; fill their bellies and get to know them while they’re off-guard.
After River: A Novel by Donna Milner