Best 2002 Adventures (4)
January 10, 2021
One in a series of 10 posts identifying Josh Glenn’s favorite 2002 adventure novels.
Michael Punke’s frontier adventure The Revenant: A Novel of Revenge.
“The goal each day is tomorrow morning,” according to gritty frontiersman Hugh Glass, who in the summer of 1823 — decades before the West, as they say, was won — is viciously mauled by a grizzly and left for dead by two of his fellow Rocky Mountain Fur Company colleagues… who compound their crime by stealing Glass’s rifle and hatchet, too. The man’s throat is nearly ripped out, yet he somehow lives. In this throwback to man-versus-nature survival yarns by Jack London through Hammond Innes, we root for Glass to safely traverse (crawling, at first) Missouri Territory, a journey of a couple thousand miles when all is said done… and to get the revenge promised by the book’s subtitle. Spoiler alert! He doesn’t get revenge, not really; though he does get his stuff back. The book’s plot — based on a true story; Hugh Glass was a real person — is secondary to the realistic period details and our protagonist’s grueling ordeal. PS: The word “revenant” means someone who has risen from the grave to terrorize the living.
Fun facts: Alejandro González Iñárritu directed the 2015 movie adaptation, which stars Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hardy, Domhnall Gleeson, and Will Poulter.
JOSH GLENN’S *BEST ADVENTURES* LISTS: BEST 250 ADVENTURES OF THE 20TH CENTURY | 100 BEST OUGHTS ADVENTURES | 100 BEST RADIUM AGE (PROTO-)SCI-FI ADVENTURES | 100 BEST TEENS ADVENTURES | 100 BEST TWENTIES ADVENTURES | 100 BEST THIRTIES ADVENTURES | 75 BEST GOLDEN AGE SCI-FI ADVENTURES | 100 BEST FORTIES ADVENTURES | 100 BEST FIFTIES ADVENTURES | 100 BEST SIXTIES ADVENTURES | 75 BEST NEW WAVE SCI FI ADVENTURES | 100 BEST SEVENTIES ADVENTURES | 100 BEST EIGHTIES ADVENTURES | 75 BEST DIAMOND AGE SCI-FI ADVENTURES | 100 BEST NINETIES ADVENTURES | NOTES ON 21st-CENTURY ADVENTURES.