Reputation is Everything

After starting reading Three Day Road by Joseph Boyden, I’ve already started to love the premise of the story line. I can already visualize living in this time period as if I was apart of the story. I think this is because the story is told in the main characters Elijah and Xavier’s point of view and gives it much more of a personal connection.

This story takes place in the early 90’s,  Elijah Weesageechak and his best friend Xavier Bird, two Cree aboriginals, fight as a sniper team in WW1. Xavier was raised by his aunt, Niska, in the bush which was the more traditional way for Cree hunters to live. On the other hand,  Elijah was sent to a Canadian-sponsored English-speaking boarding school. You may ask, how did these two boys meet? Well Niska and Xavier rescue Elijah from the school ultimately so he doesn’t have to proceed with being assimilated into Canadian culture and the two boys grow up together.

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Picture: “THREE DAY ROAD.” THREE DAY ROAD. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 Nov. 2016.

After reading throughout the beginning of the book, one thing I have noticed is the change in relationship between Elijah and his best friend Xavier. After the two joined the war together I’ve started to notice the spilt between both of these characters personalities that ultimately I am predicting is going to cause conflict as I continue to read. Elijah has already been labelled as a “mass killer” and beliefs seem to be pointed towards war and reputation rather than the traditional way of living he was bought up by. In my opinion, a reason for this sense of ‘reputation is everything’ may be the result of discrimination towards Elijah and Xavier’s culture. Both obviously coming from an aboriginal back round does make them an outcast from the rest of the white English speaking soldiers. I’ve noticed that Elijah has started to make more of an effort to fit in and is more willing to go against his beliefs to gain the status from the military. As for Xavier, I don’t see this as much and being one of the narrators he explains how he’s not exactly supporting how Elijah is dealing with the stresses and pressure of the military. Why question after starting this book is, was Xavier and Elijah the only aboriginal soldiers or were their others that were treated differently?

I found this video of the World War 1 and it gave me a great imagery of what living in this time period was like, as well the atmosphere of living in the horrible conditions within the trenches was like. Three Day Road is written during this time period and I thought this video gave images of situation that I’ve started to read about in this book so far.

My guess for this duration of this book is the tension between Elijah and Xavier is going to get worse as the pressures of WW1 continue. I think that this might affect the two best friends relationship in a negative way, and the competition for attention from other soldiers will continue.

 

 

 

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