By Donna Milner
Earlier than River, every thing was once ideal. . . . growing to be up on a Canadian dairy farm under miles from the yank border, fifteen-year-old Natalie Ward is aware little of the skin international. yet her loving, close-knit family members is the envy of old and young alike within the close by city of Atwood. Natalie adores her 3 brothers—especially Boyer, the eldest, whom she idolizes. yet every little thing adjustments one scorching July afternoon in 1966 whilst a long-haired stranger appears to be like at their door—a soft-spoken American, a Vietnam warfare 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 so much dearly loves.
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Extra info for After River: A Novel
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. River picked up his bags and together they headed to the dairy. Buddy followed at their heels, his tail wagging. ’ ‘I’ll bet she never had to prune it,’ my mother replied with a laugh. Pruning that garden was always an ordeal for Mom. Once a week, from spring to fall, she put on Dad’s oilskin mackinaw, leather gloves, and rubber boots.
Nick Mumford, my son-in-law of three years is much more at ease with me than I have ever been with him. But time has eroded my resistance – a resistance I felt before I even met him. Nick, whose grandfather was our family doctor when I was growing up, is one of life’s little twists that show up with an ironic sense of inevitability. Just like the fact that Jenny chose to do her medical internship at St Helena’s Hospital in Atwood. The moment she told me she was dating old Dr Allen Mumford’s grandson, I knew she would end up with him.
I explain the schedule as I follow him into the bathroom. He offers once again to drive me. ‘At least to the Cache Creek junction,’ he says as he glances up from the sink. ‘It will save you the wait there. ’ I pull out my make-up case and begin tossing in toiletries. ‘I can sleep on the bus,’ I tell him, but even as I say it I know it’s not true. Vern squeezes the tube too hard and white toothpaste spurts into the sink. ‘I want to be there for you, Natalie,’ he says. ‘I’d like to meet your mother before she—’ he bites off the word before it escapes from his mouth.
After River: A Novel by Donna Milner