Review: Hunting for the Mississippi by Camille Bouchard 9781771860727

Review: Hunting for the Mississippi by Camille Bouchard 9781771860727

Title: Hunting for the Mississippi
Author: Camille Bouchard (translated by Peter McCambridge)
ISBN: 9781771860727
Price: $19.95
Publisher: Baraka Books

Review by John Spychka

The year is 1682. René Robert Cavalier de La Salle claims possession of Louisiana in the name of Louis XIV, King of France and Navarre. De La Salle returns to France, and in 1684 he is once again commissioned by the King of France. This time De La Salle leaves La Rochelle, France with four ships, over 300 people, and supplies and equipment. De La Salle’s mission is to find the mouth of the Mississippi, sail up the river, and build a French settlement in Louisiana. Will he succeed?

Award-winning, Quebec writer Camille Bouchard’s novel, Hunting for the Mississippi, is based on De La Salle’s search for the mouth of the Mississippi River as he sailed across the Atlantic, south to the Caribbean Sea and northwest through the Gulf of Mexico. The novel follows one young boy’s story, Eustache Bréman, as he comes of age in the midst of some of the harshest and hostile living conditions imaginable. From the insalubrious conditions on the ships to fatal diseases to hunger to the threat of attack from the “Savages” to internal strife among the leaders of the expedition and the settlers themselves. The odds are stacked against young Eustache, his mother, and their friends from simply surviving the crossing. But they do and their faith and determination are stretched to the limit as they follow De La Salle in his unremitting search for the Mississippi.

Crossing the Atlantic is treacherous and strange things begin to happen as the expedition leaves Saint Dominigue and goes north through the Gulf of Mexico. A native is found dead, probably murdered, and the victim’s tribe captures some of the colonizers, including Eustache, for revenge. Then one of the settlers goes missing one morning, never to be found. What happened to this loving father, husband, and hard-working carpenter? Further, one of the young settlers, Eustache’s girlfriend, suddenly becomes moody and withdrawn for no reason. And why were the Kanawaka tribe mysteriously losing warriors, making this particular tribe hostile toward the settlers? Was all this simply bad luck? One thing is certain: Time is running out for De La Salle to find the mouth of the Mississippi and begin building a French settlement.

Bouchard has combed the research and offers a fresh take on what happened to De La Salle’s expedition. InHunting for the Mississippi, the author weaves an exciting tale based largely on true events. He brings 17th-century America alive with vivid detail and colourful characters in this fast-paced adventure story that will entertain readers of all ages.

Hunting for the Mississippi was translated from the French Le rôle des cochons (2014), Éditions Québec Amérique, by Quebec City resident Peter McCambridge.


This book is available at Livres Trois Canons – the English Bookstore in Quebec City at Place Naviles.

Tel: (418) 204-4325

info @ livrestroiscanons .com
Quebec City English bookstore

Librairie anglaise à Québec 


About Author

Livres Trois Canons

Livres neufs et usagés en anglais à Québec. Livres Trois Canons, Place Naviles, 3400-SS2, chemin des Quatre-Bourgeois, Québec (Québec) G1W 2L3 Tél: (418) 204-4325 info @