***Review From Julie from The Nerd Girl Page***
I received this book from the author in exchange for a review.
The author, Michael Hawk Spisak describes Full Circle: The End of the Beginning as a devastating introspective into Native American culture and ceremony, spirituality, humanity, and society at large. The story is told from the perspective of Jackson Thermal, a white/Native American mixed blood.
In his acknowledgement, the author is intentionally banal and hoping to “piss off” and “offend” his readers. This is followed by a 12-page introduction that I would describe as an angry diatribe that presents biased opinion as the absolute truth that the reader is too misguided to have previously known. If the author’s extremist views haven’t “pissed” you off at this point, you might be tempted to continue reading this book. The introduction did northing to make me care about the author’s point of view or give me reason to accept the veracity of his statements, and his story did nothing to make me care about his characters or what happens to them.
There are many reasons I didn’t enjoy reading this book:
The plot rambles disjointedly–from a spiritual gathering in which Jackson participates but seems to think has become insincere to disjointed conversations with the one person Jackson seems to think is worthy of his respect. The angry internal conversations and commentary become tiresome. It wasn’t clear how Jackson and his varied companions, who seem to be unemployed, are able to afford their cross-country travel, endless cigarettes let alone food. Most of the characters are underdeveloped and their motivation and involvement is unclear.
There were too many grammatical and typographical errors throughout the book. The title was misspelled on the copy of the book I received.
In an effort to make Jackson’s life pitiable, the author overplayed his backstory. Instead of sticking with one or two bad childhood experiences (i.e., abusive foster parents), the author throws in so many horrible events that it becomes unbelievable. After reading about Jackson abusing alcohol, mistreating animals and using women as a result of his unfortunate childhood, I had hope that Jackson and the story would redeem itself by becoming a hero’s journey. I had hoped that there would be a tie into the spiritual event at the beginning of the boo–like Jackson was going to overcome his trials. Sadly, the I then met Mandy, one of the women Jackson uses. Mandy, describes Jackson as “a borderline sociopath with a severe case of PTSD, fueled by homicidal tendencies.” Mandy was right. Jackson’s true path is only to systematically and sadistically exact revenge for atrocities committed as Europeans began colonizing the Americas.
While I understand the author’s point of view, the angry, biased presentation of his message didn’t enlighten me or inspire me to research the topic more. There are many good books about Imperialism and the impact on Native Americans that I would recommend over this work of fiction.
***this review was done in conjunction with Nerd Girl Official. For more information regarding our reviews please visit the fansite: www.Facebook.com/NerdGirl.ng***
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