Into the Heart of the Country

Into the Heart of the Country

A Novel

Book - 2011
Average Rating:
Rate this:

Longlisted for the 2011 Scotiabank Giller Prize

Set in eighteenth-century Canada, this compelling new novel takes the reader deep into unexplored territory. Appearing only fleetingly in the historical record of the Hudson's Bay Company are the Native women who lived at the company's Prince of Wales Fort and served as companions to the European traders -- and whose survival was bound, for better or worse, to the fortunes of those men.

Across more than two centuries, the mixed-blood woman Molly Norton, daughter of Governor Moses and personal favourite of the explorer Samuel Hearne, speaks to us from her dreams. As the story of her liaison with Hearne unfolds, we move toward its tragic consequences. When their small society is torn apart, Molly and the other women find themselves and their children abandoned by their British masters. Now -- in one of history's cruel ironies -- they must fend for themselves in the harsh country from which their own ancestors sprang.

Unflinching, powerful and rich in moral ambiguity, Into the Heart of the Country explores a tragic meeting of cultures that still reverberates in the present day.

Publisher: Toronto : HarperCollins Canada, 2011.
ISBN: 9781554686346
Characteristics: 399 pages ; 24 cm


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
May 02, 2012

This story is set in Churchill, Manitoba in the 17th century. It is told via British Governors of the Hudson Bay post and the children they father with aboriginal women. The book is patronizing to aboriginal peoples and contains obvious mistakes about aboriginal culture (e.g., references to Inuit carving, kissing, etc.).

debwalker Mar 26, 2011

" In her latest novel, Giller Prize nominee Pauline Holdstock has taken on a tragic and little-known chapter in Canadian history. Into the Heart of the Country explores the relationship between the English fur traders in Churchill, Manitoba, and the native women on whom they relied on for their survival....Holdstock’s writing manages to be both heartbreakingly poetic and densely detailed.....sad passages, ghostlike recollections, written almost from the vantage point of the present, establish the book as a great work of fiction."

From Saturday's Globe and Mail
Published Friday, Mar. 25, 2011

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at HPL

To Top