Monday, March 11, 2013

The Adventures of Radisson by Martin Fournier

Title: The Adventures of Radisson: Hell Never Burns
Author: Martin Fournier
Format: Paperback, 220 pages
Pub. Date: November 1st 2012
Source: Jean Booknerd blog


3 stars.

15-year-old Parisian, Pierre-Esprit Radisson makes his journey in 1651 to the village of Trois-Rivières on the St. Lawrence River, in modern day Canada. A top shot among his peers, and even those older than he, he is eager to go out fighting with the men against the stealthy, enemy tribe of the Iroquois people. When those he was looking forward to fighting alongside him leave him behind in the dead of the night, he's rightfully left bitter. While hunting to blow off some steam with his friends, he is kidnapped by the Iroquois tribe and taken away from his home. Along the way of his entrapment, Radisson will learn that some traits; love and loyalty, transcend race or tribe, and that everyone has something to teach and to learn.


Admittedly, this isn't the usual book I'd reach for in a bookstore or library. However, when I got the chance to review this novel I took it, since my girlfriend has a bit of an obsession with things to do with Native American populations. After reading this story however, I'll just pass it off to her and hope that maybe it speaks more to her than it did to me.

-I didn't really enjoy the narration of this story. The sentences often felt choppy and awkward, and it reduced the flow of the overall plot line. Often times I had to double check to see if a new sentence had in fact started, or if it was a weirdly formed half-sentence. It's true that grammar isn't the key to a good story, but in this case, it definitely chipped away at the grand scheme of things.

-+ I'm not sure if this next point is positive or negative, so I'll mark it as both. It was very oddly detailed. In some ways, that's a good thing. The natural, peaceful scene settings of the Canadian landscape were gorgeous. I'd want to explore the rivers and forests too if I were Radisson. However, some important things- like the deaths of characters- were grossly simplified. It sometimes came off just as "oh. Yeah. They're dead now," which disconnected me a bit from what was going on.

+ That being said, I do think that this book gives off a generally positive message. You can't really judge an entire group of people because their beliefs are different from yours, and sometimes even though lifestyles are lived differently, traits and commonalities can be found among populations. As hippie-ish as it sounds, we can all just get along if we learn from one another.

Now that I'm off that little preachy soap box, I'll sum my views up. This rating was extremely difficult for me, and should only be taken as a guideline. Because this kind of book isn't my "thing", as it were, I do not feel that I can properly judge it. I didn't care for it, but you may. I recommend it for those with any interest in Native Americans or history, especially boys. As awful as it sounds (gender roles, stereotypes, blah blah), this is a "boy book" to me, and explains my limited enjoyment. So, don't go by me and see for yourself. I hope you enjoy it more than me, sincerely.

Thank you to Jean Booknerd blog for my copy.


  1. I can't wait to read it, thank you for giving it to me! ^_^

  2. Well, I can't say that I would have picked up this one, either. I am guessing that perhaps the deaths and such were glossed over to make it more appropriate for the younger audience? I do like that it is detailed as I am such a stickler for detail, but I have to admit this probably isn't for me either. Thanks for the informative review, Jillyn!

  3. No problem, thanks for reading!

    I think that's why they were glossed over too. But, as a "mature" reader it just came off a bit choppy.