Mapping the Interior by Stephen Graham Jones is a haunting tale of childhood, family, and loss. Told from the perspective of an adult looking back on a tale that began when he was 12 years old, it feels authentic and captures the way a child might have interpreted things.
Jones weaves a fascinating tale of a young indigenous boy who discovers the ghost of his father lurking in their home. What begins as a story with a potentially uplifting tone gradually and insidiously becomes increasingly sinister and tense.
I particularly enjoyed the fact that there’s something akin to a combination of the mythologies associated with tulpas and golems involved in the manifestation of the ghost. I’m not familiar enough with indigenous folklore that I can pinpoint any particular element that corresponds to this story.
Listening to the audiobook for this story was particularly captivating because the narrator did an excellent job of capturing a cadence and accent that approximated the tone and speech patterns I’m familiar with from indigenous people I’ve known. That touch made the narrative feel more like someone was simply telling me a story from their own life.