Fiction - Literary
362 Pages
Reviewed on 06/29/2024
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Carol Thompson for Readers' Favorite

Toquuxla by James N. Brenna is a captivating narrative that transports readers to the dawn of human exploration in North America, particularly Montana. At the heart of the story is Toquuxla, or Toq, a young man who ventures into a world different from the one he knew. The novel begins with a cataclysmic event that forces Toq into the unknown, navigating treacherous terrains and encountering extinct megafauna that once roamed freely across what is now Montana. The author’s vivid descriptions bring the Ice Age wilderness to life, immersing the reader in Toq’s journey as he learns to coexist with the natural world rather than conquer it. This book will appeal to Montanans and anyone interested in early exploration, history, and environmentalism.

Central to Toq’s character development is his evolving relationship with nature. Unlike his contemporaries who seek to dominate and exploit their surroundings, Toq finds solace in observing and respecting the ecosystem’s delicate balance. James N. Brenna skillfully weaves together historical speculation with imaginative storytelling, crafting a narrative that is both educational and thought-provoking. By melding factual elements of prehistoric North America with a fictional journey, Toquuxla invites readers to contemplate humanity’s impact on the environment across millennia. Hand-drawn maps throughout the book further guide the reader; however, Brenna captures the landscape so vividly in prose that it can be easily visualized. Brenna transports readers to a distant past while delivering a timely message about conservation and respect for the natural world.