May 2016 Indie Next List
“When a hunting accident results in the death of his neighbor's son, Landreaux Iron follows native tradition and offers his own son, LaRose, to the bereaved family. Thus begins a powerful story of anger, love, hurt, and joy among a group of families and neighbors living in a small community in the North Dakota hinterland. Erdrich's luminous prose captures each character's struggle to overcome their worst impulses - whether it's a handicapped man's long-nurtured quest for revenge, or the pain of a mother withholding love from her daughter - and reaches into the distant past to reveal the story of the young boy's namesake, the original LaRose. Muted on the surface, but with a heart that beats strong, Erdrich's latest novel is a book to be treasured.”
— Peter Sherman (E), Wellesley Books, Wellesley, MA
North Dakota, 1999. Landreaux Iron accidentally shoots and kills five-year-old Dusty Ravich, the son of his neighbors. The two families have always been close; Dusty was best friends with Landreaux's son LaRose. Horrified, Landreaux turns to tradition--prayer in an Ojibwe sweat lodge--for guidance, and finds a way forward. Following an ancient means of atonement, he and his wife will give LaRose to the grieving Ravich family. "Our son will be your son now," they say.
As the years pass, LaRose becomes the linchpin linking the Irons and the Raviches. But when a vengeful man with a grudge against Landreaux begins hurling accusations of a cover-up the day Dusty died, he threatens the tenuous peace that has kept these two fragile families whole.
Inspiring and affecting, LaRose is an unforgettable, dazzling tour de force from one of America's most distinguished literary masters.