Posts Tagged 'David Carpenter'

Just as dead

Review of David Carpenter’s A Hunter’s Confession.

The ambiguities with which he wrestles endure in the pursuit of wild creatures to which he now limits himself: fishing.

“You don’t shoot fish,” he tells that same hunting buddy. “And you can’t do catch-and-release hunting.”

Yet a photograph on his website shows Carpenter holding a fine trout in his hands, and it looks just as dead as anything he might have shot.

Something moving

The Globe’s review of A Hunter’s Confession.

Carpenter’s memoir includes several dangerous moments with nature: He hears a wolf nearby, a cougar stalks him and he stumbles upon a wild old man of the woods. These altercations happen in a flash, which mirrors a truth about hunting: You rarely see an animal. You spend days alone, until you think perhaps every living thing has been wiped off the face of the planet, that maybe you yourself are responsible for this apocalypse. You march around alone and wet and hungry until it is almost too dark for a shot; you’re left with wind and bog, Orion’s belt hanging above you in the sky, and then – what’s that? is something moving? You raise your barrel and squeeze and pray.

Michael Winter has killed caribou, ducks, rabbits, grouse and one whiskey jack. He’s eaten, and written about, them all.

Poaching picaresque, compassionate hunting

Two new reviews from Quill & Quire.  Jeffrey Moore’s The Extinction Club

Narrated in two voices – Nile’s and Céleste’s – The Extinction Club is simultaneously a story about the search for identity in a rootless postmodern world, a meditation on the survival of the fittest in a culture that preys upon defenseless things, and a dynamite picaresque about the animal-poaching trade. All these elements are beautifully interwoven in Moore’s haunting and darkly comic portrait of an unlikely friendship between two outcasts at the end of the line.

And David Carpenter’s A Hunter’s Confession.

Carpenter’s memoir is not so much an apologia for the practice of sport hunting; it is an attempt by one erstwhile hunter to grapple with the conflicting impulses and motivations behind the activity. Carpenter stopped hunting in 1995 after a near-death experience during which he made a deal with the universe that if he lived, he would never kill another living thing. Although he has remained true to his pledge, he retains an affinity for the hunt, and his analysis of why this should be makes for some provocative reading.



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