Truth and Bright Water is a coming of age tale focusing on the life of a 15 year old boy, his community and the art therein. .
Part 1: Book Summery.
Truth and Bright Water are dual communities separated by a river and the Canadian/American border. It is at Truth and Bright Water that the summer for 15 year old narrator, Tecumseh is to spend his summer, with his mother and his cousin Lum. The towns cast a diverse group of quirky characters: Lucy Rabbit, who is obsessed with being like Marilyn Monroe, Tecumseh's father who is a part time carpenter, part time smuggler, who also tries to cash in on the occasional get rich quick scheme, Aunt Cassie, who has returned to town very suddenly and mysteriously, and a pack of stray dogs known as The Cousins. The beginning of the summer is marked by an enigma that unfolds as the summer progresses. As the novel opens, Tecumseh and Lum witness a woman walk up a distant bluff and toss something into the river. Almost immediately she leaps off the cliff after it. Searching the river's .
edge, they find a child's skull, which they believe to be the object thrown, but the woman's body never surfaces. But he and the reader remain largely in the dark about several other story lines. One of the major story lines is that of enigmatic Monroe Swimmer, contemporary Native American Artist who has just moved into the old Methodist Church. It is through working for Monroe that Tecumseh begins to divine the answer to many of his lingering questions about the world.
Part 2: Monroe Swimmer: a portrait of an Artist.
Monroe Swimmer was native to improvised Truth. Not much of a student, when he was in High School, he made extra money painting on store windows and selling pen and ink landscapes to tourists during Indian days, the annual Native American festival held in the area. He received an art scholarship to Wild Rose Community College, but left for Toronto in the middle of his second year.