|Photo credit: Missoulian.com|
I first became award of Doig and his writing when my father, who never recommends books, told me to read Dancing at Rascal Fair, which I loved immensely.
Doig wrote about the Montana he knew as a boy and his voice was so strong and so accurate. Through his words I could imagine life in Montana living on a farm, or attending a one-room school house. From Wallace Stegner, another author, he inherited the title of the dean of the West. Surely few authors have described life in the West as well as Doig.
This article in the Seattle Times, written yesterday, really gives you an idea of what kind of person Doig was. It includes several quotes from his wife of fifty years. "Mr. Doig was in some critical ways much like the ordinary heroes he wrote about, the ones who got up each day, worked hard and did the best they could with what they had, said his widow, Carol Doig."
Doig was a hero to me for making the voice of the working man or woman so clear and concise, for bringing the West of yesteryear and today together in such an accessible way. If you have never read any of his books my favorite is Whistling Season. I recommend you start there.
Doig's publisher, Greg Kloskie said with Ivan Doig's death we have lost a national treasure. I concur.
Rest in peace, Ivan Doig. Thank you for the gifts you have given us all through your books.