The Expeditions

The Expeditions From Karl Iagnemma recipient of the Paris Review Plimpton Prize comes a fierce and gorgeous story of an estranged father and son s unlikely journey though the wilderness of nineteenth century Americ

  • Title: The Expeditions
  • Author: Karl Iagnemma
  • ISBN: 9780385335959
  • Page: 342
  • Format: Hardcover
  • From Karl Iagnemma, recipient of the Paris Review Plimpton Prize, comes a fierce and gorgeous story of an estranged father and son s unlikely journey though the wilderness of nineteenth century America.The year is 1844 Sixteen year old runaway Elisha Stone is in Detroit, a hardscrabble frontier town on the edge of the civilized world A canny survivor with the instincts oFrom Karl Iagnemma, recipient of the Paris Review Plimpton Prize, comes a fierce and gorgeous story of an estranged father and son s unlikely journey though the wilderness of nineteenth century America.The year is 1844 Sixteen year old runaway Elisha Stone is in Detroit, a hardscrabble frontier town on the edge of the civilized world A canny survivor with the instincts of a born naturalist, Elisha signs on to an expedition into Michigan s vast, uncharted Upper Peninsula The party is led by two charismatic adventurers Silas Brush, a ruthless land grabbing ex soldier, and George Tiffin, a quixotic professor desperate to discover proof of his unorthodox theories about the origins of man.On the eve of the expedition s departure, Elisha pens a heartfelt letter to his mother in Newell, Massachusetts But it is Elisha s estranged father, the Reverend William Edward Stone, who opens the envelope Grief stricken by the recent death of his wife a death Elisha could not have known about Reverend Stone is jolted into action he must find his son.What follows is a powerful narrative about the complex love between fathers and sons and an evocative portrait of an era of faith, wonder, and violence While Elisha s journey draws him deeper into uncharted territory, Reverend Stone must navigate through a country in turmoil as he moves toward an inevitable reunion with a son who has become a stranger A first novel of uncommon wisdom, The Expeditions is the confirmation of an extraordinary talent.From the Hardcover edition.

    One thought on “The Expeditions”

    1. WHAT I WAS EXPECTING:An exciting tale of adventure and a heart warming coming of age tale. I was hoping for a touching reunion and a lot of deep, character development throughout the novel THOUGHTS:MehThis wasn’t really memorable in any way. It was neither here nor there. It is in no way good enough for me to spent 400 words gushing over how much I love it. But I didn’t really dislike it enough for me to spent those words slandering it either. And from that statement it is an easy leap for m [...]

    2. The Expeditions is a historical novel set in the 1840s, primarily in Michigan. The expeditions are external (a son embarks on an expedition of the Upper Peninsula) and internal) (his father embarks on an expedition of his soul as he travels to Michigan to find his son). This novel explores faith, treachery, prejudice, and sexual dynamics. The author writes well, and describes 19th century Detroit beautifully. In fact, early on in the book the milieu seems to be a much more completely developed c [...]

    3. I chose to read this book because the primary action (i.e the expedition) takes place in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, where I spent three long-ago summers learning to love the north woods and Lake Superior's wild beauty. (I love to read books set in locations I know and remember.) I also chose to read it because the story revolves around a minister and his rebellious son, and though these fictional characters and I are separated by more than 150 years, I felt I could relate to their conflict if n [...]

    4. One of the striking things Iagnemma does in this novel is handle the characters of Professor Tiffin and Mr. Brush. If you've read War and Peace, then you know Tolstoy's knack for making you fall in love with a character, only to hate him/her fifty or a hundred pages later, only to fall in love with them again before the book's conclusion (think Prince Andrei, and Pierre). Iagnemma pulls off a similar trick here. That in itself is worth the read--ambitious, and well-done. The realistic rendering [...]

    5. I was pleasantly surprised with the book because of my low expectations when starting the book. I thought it was an interesting idea for a story but the way Iagnemma told the story was a bit boring. I am not the biggest fan of stories unless there is a good story teller. I found it a bit boring at times because when I was drawn in, the plot would drag on too long and I lost interest. Overall, I think The Expeditions by Karl Iagnemma had the potential to be a good book, but I didn't think it live [...]

    6. Short review. Enjoyable. I learned a lot about life in the frontier of northern mid-west in 1840's. I was fascinated by all the details. I found it easy to sympathize with Elisha and his father. The other "characters" are nicely developed. They reminded me of Nast cartoons, whiskers and all. I can't decide why I am not giving this a rave review. Perhaps I am just in the mood for a female protagonist at the moment. But I could smell the forest in Iagnemma's descriptions and I could feel the labor [...]

    7. I was expecting more of an action-packed adventure, from the name of course, but it was a lot more slow paced. I did love the characters and how enriched with detail they were; their complexity made them feel real and right there in front of you. The scenery was definitely romanticized, but nevertheless all the more real and life like. Elisha captures these details in his field book as he embarks on this expedition with his companions who are not what one may believe to be at first impressions. [...]

    8. Elisha ran away from home at 13, and three years later he finds himself in Detroit, signing on to a scientific expedition into the Upper Peninsula. Note: science in the 1840s isn't quite what we expect now, so this scientific expedition involves a fair amount of swindling, hoaxes and creative storytelling.I enjoyed this journey, both Elisha's through the UP, and his father's after him. Both men learn much about themselves and each other. There are some sexual scenes in the book.

    9. This surprisingly slow-moving book focuses on a 16-year-old boy who left home in Massachusetts three years earlier & who, in Detroit, signs on to a scientific expedition to Michigan's Upper Peninsula in the 1840s; in alternating chapters the focus is on his father, a minister, who decides to track the boy down to tell him that his mother has died. Both are archetypal American innocents who, to some extent, manage to maintain their innocence even as they encounter archetypal American scoundre [...]

    10. exploration of upper Michigan peninsula / search by one man for proof that Chippewa Indians were descendants of the Israelites and that all of mankind (red-white-brown) are brothers so that slavery should be abolished / and work by another man in the same party to catalog plants-trees-metal deposits in this unexplored land / all tied with relationship between a minister and his son, the 2 professors, and their Fr Canadian guides

    11. This book took me forever to read! I really enjoyed the authors descriptions of the upper peninsula of Michigan and his use of geology and botany in those descriptions. As well as enjoying the premise of the book. However, the characters were somehow not that compelling to me. I was a bit bored with them and often annoyed by them. Therefore I just couldn't get into as much as I wanted.

    12. Interesting read. The narratives move back and forth between the minister father and the son. It contrasts their values and beliefs. The Michigan locale made it more interesting to me. Everyone knows Woodward Avenue don't they? Being set in 1844 made for some historical information too! I would recommend it.

    13. In the late 1800s a runaway young man hires on an expedition to document the Michigan upper peninsula. His preacher father tries to find him. This one's a near miss for me; I've gotten about 9/10ths of the way through but just don't feel like finishing. I don't care much abut what happens to these characters. Not sure why. The period atmosphere is well done, though.

    14. Historical fiction in my homeland. Expertly done. Amazingly researched. Better yet, expertly AND amazingly interpreted history of the "colonization" of the Upper Penninsula of Michigan in artful narrative form. A must-read for anyone who has ever heard of the Mackinac Bridge, which didn't even exist when this inventive novel is set.

    15. Historical fiction of the UP of Michigan in 1844. 16 year old boy joins a expedition to explore UP, minister father follows him to tell him of mothers death. Great character development, a little slow moving.

    16. This book is slow moving at times but I still enjoyed it. It's a great story about a son who embarks on an expedition into Michigan's Upper Penninsula, and his father who is determined to find his son.

    17. This is a marvelously evocative tale of fathers, sons, loss and renewal set against the raw landscape of Michigan's Upper Peninsula in the 1840s. Iagnemma displays a tremendous talent for conjuring a sense of time and place. Exciting, interesting and beautiful.

    18. Not my cup of tea. It is verrrry slow going and I didn't really start to enjoy it at all until after the halfway point, but by the time the end came around I honestly didn't care what happened to these characters because they were all kind of insufferable.

    19. Beautifully detailed and bittersweet. :) This is another book that's been on my shelves for a while and I finally opened it up.

    20. This is a very interesting book about a teenager who left home in the early 1900s and ended up on a expedition of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan with some interesting characters.

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *