At the core of this novel, Lee Maracle’s last, is the question “Do the dead regret dying after they reach the after world?” Mink wonders this as he regrets dying. He does not want to leave earth with regrets, but he is so young when he dies again, after returning to earth with his ancestors’ permission. This time, however, he has seen Tkaronto, the city where his father lived, and he has seen and experienced first-hand the deep forests and bubbling rivers in the physical world he missed out on in his previous life.
Mink Returns to Tkaronto is a novel about a spirit’s return to earth, its experience in the physical world, and its development and growth. Paralleled with this, the novel is also an exploration of how Turtle Island’s geography and ecosystems have been manipulated and changed.
No one should regret dying; in this, her last novel, Lee Maracle describes the voyage undertaken by a young mink spirit and in doing so she reminds her readers to live their lives truthfully and to have good memories and stories to take with them to the spirit world.
About the author
Lee Maracle is a member of the Sto:Lo nation. She was born in Vancouver and grew up on the North Shore. She is the author of the critically acclaimed novels Ravensong and Daughters Are Forever. Her novel for young adults, Will’s Garden was well-received and is taught in schools. She has also published on book of poetry, Bent Box, and a work of creative non-fiction, I Am Woman. She is the co-editor of a number of anthologies, including the award winning anthology My Home As I Remember and Telling It: Women and Language across Culture. Her work has been published in anthologies and scholarly journals worldwide. The mother of four and grandmother of seven, Maracle is currently an instructor at the University of Toronto, the Traditional Teacher for First Nation’s House, and instructor with the Centre for Indigenous Theatre and the S.A.G.E. (Support for Aboriginal Graduate Education). She is also a writing instructor at the Banff Centre for the Arts.
In 2009, Maracle received an Honorary Doctor of Letters from St. Thomas University. Maracle recently received the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for her work promoting writing among Aboriginal Youth, and is 2014 finalist for the Ontario Premier’s Award for Excellence in the Arts.
Maracle has served as Distinguished Visiting Scholar at the University of Toronto, University of Waterloo, and the University of Western Washington.