A father comes out to his daughter as a woman. Or at least, he was once a woman. It’s complicated. Funny. Painful. Eventually joyful. Meanwhile the daughter, who was adopted, has her own identity issues. At the Aboriginal addictions treatment centre where she works, everyone assumes she is Indigenous. But is she? How can she find out? Her need to know leads her down dangerous roads.
An intricate, compelling tale narrated by a woman providing help and support to those who have lost their way, even while she unravels the mysteries of her own path through life. Cardinal Divide illuminates how the relationships we form throughout our lives transcend our cultural and sexual identities. This is a tale that topples our categorical assumptions about others, forcing us to ponder who we are and how we define ourselves.- Charlotte Mendel, author of Turn Us Again and A Hero
By fusing the stories of Dreamcatcher Lodge and Ben’s story of arrival and change, the text breathes new life into narratives of settler/Indigenous encounters and histories. Ben’s story and sense of identity as non-binary is understood as Two-Spirit, which is a reframing of queerness through Indigenous epistemologies. The Cardinal Divide in the foothills of the Rockies serves as an evocative metaphor for the co-mingling of stories and histories.- Canadian Literature: A Quarterly Criticism and Review