By Gary Schmechl
"I got a copy
of your Sandpit II about a year ago, and I like it very much. You've
done a marvelous job of weaving together a vibrant body of lore
and infusing it with your own life and personality. It has real
historical value because of your courage and resourcefulness in
getting to know the people and issues. I haven't read anything on
the subject in recent years and that interested me more.
I am also very
impressed with the book itself -- it's very well produced and edited.
I don't know how you accomplished this, but I get the impression
it was more or less on your own, which is extraordinary." David
Raines Wallace, author of The Klamath Knot: Explorations
of Myth & Evolution.
second Sandspit notebook, Francesca Fryer continues to bring to
life the historic Indian-White encounter on California s northcoast...Her
creative task also became personal the well-known hero's journey.
Meanwhile the author listened, digested, observed.....through interviews,
tape-recordings and letters, along with (her) wide-flung net capturing
pertinent historical data. Now confined to her bed, she uses a computer
on a hospital table. These notebooks.....have become her song."
Louise Vernon, San Jose-based author and teacher
"I also knew
Harry (Roberts) and.....came to realize...what a remarkable, special
person he was and what a depth of knowledge and wisdom he possessed,
though his manner on the surface often belied his perceptiveness
I've just finished
reading Book I.....and want to tell you what a beautiful, remarkable,
profound book it is. The way in which you told the story, how you
wove together the threads of all the lives and historical periods
centered around that particular spot on this earth was very moving
and insightful and imparted to me a real range and depth of experiences
and of lives that I had no knowledge of before.....I never knew
about the Spotts or Harry's mother Ruth or Florence Shaughnessy,
or Alfred Kroeber's involvement with Robert Spott and the Yuroks.
Nor was I aware of the depth and extent of Harry's training in Yurok
My sense of
Harry as a unique and remarkable man was right all those years ago
and your book has helped to reinforce that feeling for me.....with
his Yurok understanding and knowledge giving him an historical connection
to the Klamath River area far beyond anything a European transplant
like me could begin to fathom." Gary Schmechel
Joyce Sundberg, Yurok registered on the Trinidad Rancheria,
producer of Native Voices: Indian Interest Program KHSU Arcata.
"As local Native
Americans we feel the importance of this information about the Yurok
Indians be told....Ms. Fryer (tells) about the world she has come
to know...gives her experiences, also the many years of research
that has continued throughout her life." Mr. and Mrs. Sam L.
Jones and the Indian Action Council of Northwestern California
Fryer uses are fascinating in themselves. She has the majestic landscapes
and colorful characters of an epic novel. The book is worth reading
just to hear the voices of people like Florence Shaughnessy and
Harry Roberts. Her unique approach offers intriguing new views"
Sandspit documents a quest for truth....Fryer s work, however,
is greater than the sum of her materials....By juxtaposing contemporary
accounts.....with the pronouncements of Alfred Kroeber and Erik
Erikson, she opens the way for new interpretations. Sandspit, then,
is not really a history of a region and its people; it is a rediscovery."
P.J. Petersen, author
"I like this.
It's about people." Audrey Jones
in the Australian bush, I was engrossed by Bruce Chatwin's Songlines.
Ms. Fryer s work has an added, more intimate.. .quality. It...honors
all participants, White and Native American, and their personal
histories... I am convinced her work will have wide appeal." Barbara
Taylor, raised in the Australian bush, a counseling psychologist
at UC Davis, now retired
an epic story of the Yurok people. Francesca Fryer gives a voice
to the living and those now silent, intoning a truth for this and
all future generations." Finley Fryer
years of research for Fryer to bring to light the historical fragments
left in the original anecdotes and to record the voices of those
Who still remember. History comes alive to the reader through the
stories of this nation."
Anita Ford, Writer's Forum Newsletter
"You have interwoven
a moving personal account, with an elaborate history, incisive criticism,
and appropriate challenge of stereotypes.. .mostly without transitions
for widely separated times past....It works!
Dorothy Sanem Levitt, editor and friend