06 October, 2015

The revenant: a novel of revenge by Michael Punke

Based on the true story of Hugh Glass, a fur trapper in the American West, this portrait of life on the frontier is a gripping read.

Severely injured by an attack from a grizzly bear, Glass is left to die in the harsh American frontier after being abandoned by the men who were entrusted to tend to him. He is furious that they not only left him, but took his gun and hatchet, leaving him without tools for protection and survival. Revenge is a strong motivation and Glass forces himself to follow them across hundreds of miles in an environment where the inhabitants and the landscape threaten life regularly.

The author, Michael Punke, brings the West to life by describing the physical landscape and action in depth allowing the reader to fully imagine Glass’s struggles. Glass comes in contact with many people in his travels and there are some interesting characters among them, especially the Indian braves.  

I recently read the excellent book, The Martian, and although The revenant is set in a completely different world, both books share the theme of a man surviving after being left for dead in a harsh environment. Like The Martian, The revenant has been made into a movie due to be released in 2016 with Leonardo DiCaprio as Glass.

This book is a great choice if you want to read about the American West, but don’t want a classic Western. It’s also fairly short at around 250 pages so perfect for the times you prefer a reasonably quick read.

Author: Michael Punke

Reviewed by Kathy N, Collections Development.

Kathy N can’t go to sleep unless she has read a bit before turning the light off. As well as most fiction, she enjoys craft and lifestyle books to get project ideas for her rural home. She spends most of her working day buying books for Auckland Libraries.

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