by Sukey HowardJune, 2001
Lend us your ears it's audiobook month
Louise Erdrich's lyrical prose is always wonderful when read aloud. And her new book, The Last Report on the Miracles at Little No Horse, with a perfectly pitched performance by Anna Fields, including smooth segues into the Ojibwa language, is a wonderful audio presentation of an extraordinary novel. Set on the remote Ojibwa reservation of her three previous Dakota novels, Erdrich focuses on beloved Father Damien, a Catholic priest who has spent more than 80 years among the clashing clans and remarkable characters of Little No Horse. Early on, the good Father discloses to readers that he is really a she Agnes DeWitt, a former nun and farm woman. Damien has guarded her odd, secret duality, but used her singular sensibility to absorb Ojibwa spirituality and to forgive and redeem in a unique way. Now at the end of her life, faced with the possible canonization of a long-time nemesis, the bitter Sister Leopolda, Father Damien/ Agnes is forced to wrestle with her demons and with the true nature of lies, fact and fiction.