The Back of the Turtle

Thomas King

The Back of the Turtle

When Gabriel, a brilliant scientist, is accidentally responsible for killing his family and for ravaging the reserve he grew up on, he returns to assess the damage and meet his end. But when he saves the life of a young girl caught in the waves, something magical and mysterious begins to happen.

Thomas King's first novel in 15 years, The Back of the Turtle is entrancing, lyrical and deeply affecting.


"He turned towards the eastern mountains, angled the drum to catch the rising sun, and began a memorial song. But the elk skin was too soft now, too damp. The beats slid off, and his voice was drowned in the rushing water. In the distance, he could see the dog laid out on higher ground.

And in that moment, in that moment, he thought about retreating once again.

But the path back was only a memory now, all safety choked off as the sea ringed the Apostles in ink and foam.

He began the song anew, picking up the beat and raising the pitch, so that his voice carried above the slicing surf. The sun was full in his face now, the sky blue and polished. It was going to be a good day."

From The Back of the Turtle by Thomas King ©2014. Published by HarperCollins Canada.

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