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An Immigrant's Quest

An Immigrant's Quest

Lowest online price: 1,641
Language English
Contributor(s) Joseph De Prest
Binding Paperback
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Overview: An Immigrant's Quest

An incredibly entertaining, deeply moving memoir set in the mid-fifties. It is a story that will make you cry and laugh out loud. It talks of a journey through this great country from coast to coast, and gives voice to our most powerful emotions. It is a story of a young man who struggles to find his way in this new land of long winters, as his past impinges on the present, bringing both hope and despair. An unforgettable story of family and friendship, of loves lost and won. It is also a story that will resonate to many an immigrant from that time when there was little support for newcomers to this land of dreams and second chances. It is a fast moving narrative with the innate ability to describe the true story of a forgotten past.

Features: An Immigrant's Quest

  • Xlibris Corporation
Product Details
Language English
Publication Date August 12, 2013
Publisher Xlibris
Contributor(s) Joseph De Prest
Binding Paperback
Page Count 519
ISBN 10 1483671682
ISBN 13 9781483671680
Dimensions and Weight
Product Weight 763 grams
Product Dimensions 15.2 cm x 3.4 cm x 22.9 cm
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Most Helpful Reviews
  1. 1 of 1 people found this review helpful
     A nice and pleasant read... 15 December, 2013 On
    This thoughtful and exciting (if over-long) second volume of Joseph De Prest's memoirs concerns the years 1954 to 1958, when the plucky Belgian grew out of pained adolescence into young adulthood, taking plenty of hard knocks en route. In a classic tale of immigrant striving, we see Jozef (soon to be known as Joe), his two brothers and their troubled father leaving war-damaged Belgium for eastern Canada, there to struggle with a new language, frequent bigotry and economic uncertainty.

    DePrest, who described his frightening war-years childhood in the earlier Boys Don't Cry, here reveals himself as an ambitious but sensitive 17 year old full of hope (“the stars, as if knowing someone was looking at them, began to disport themselves”) who immediately gets his hands dirty behind a plow horse named Queeny on a frozen farm in Ontario and embraces Bill Haley and the Comets. With his countryman Henry Andergest, he heads West to become a “bush ape” (logger) in the dangerous lumber camps of British Columbia, then goes to sea with misfits and cutthroats aboard a tramp freighter bound for Nagasaki.

    The book is dull and repetitious in places, and could use a strong editor, but we see, in spades, that by the time he's 22, DePrest has lived a full life. He's bedded a beautiful older woman and fallen for an Italian waitress who will break his heart. He's punched his way out of near-fatal scrapes, wrestled with black bears and fought his dad over his parents’ doomed marriage. Along the way, DePrest has also developed a gift for language. Behold this quiet scene in chilly Alberta: “On the fence posts that showed between sky and pasture, swallows plunged back and forth to challenge the intruders; blackbirds were fastened to the loops of overhead wire like a ragged black wash.”

    Not bad for a garçon who grew up speaking French and Flemish. Readers will hope for a third volume of this stirring life story.
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