1850, a small town in Australia: Glindi, an Aboriginal woman, gives birth to a daughter, the result of a rape by a white man. She names the child Maraglindi, meaning "Glindi's sorrow."
However, the girl proves to be a joy to all those around her. She has the gift of love.
During the fourteen years until she dies, she encounters everything that intolerant, cruel Victorian society can throw at people it considers to be animals. She surmounts all the savagery of the white invader by conquering hate with love.
A drunkard kills her in horrific circumstances, but even then, in a twist of the tale, she has the last word and promises him a chance at redemption.
And then, she returns a second time, with an ending that will touch your heart.
Why will you enjoy this book?
You will love Maraglindi. Her story will put tears in your eyes and a smile in your heart. When you have finished, you may well have a different view of the world.
The other characters are also vivid, real people.
As a boy, Gerald had been part of a prank that killed a little child. So now, he is devoting his life to the service of God.
Kirsten was outraged when a half-caste Abo girl was allowed into her school... until she had an encounter with a snake.
Alice MacCaffery is Margalindi's mentor who pays her fees in an exclusive girls' school, a young woman of principle and passion.
Meticulously researched, this book will take you into the world of the Victorian epoch. However, Maraglindi's lessons are very relevant to our own troubled times.
Plot/Idea: 9 out of 10
Originality: 10 out of 10
Prose: 8 out of 10
Character/Execution: 10 out of 10
Overall: 9.25 out of 10
Plot: The angelic Maraglindi's life is short but she's a conduit of sublime love—even in the face of barbaric cruelty—and her peaceful, hopeful messages are universal in this captivating novel. Although the abuses described are tortuous, the fantasy element of this book is charming.
Prose: The voice is appropriately youthful for Maraglindi during her childhood, with smooth transitions to different POVs. The prose may not be exceptional, but the author is proficient and the simple language is powerful.
Originality: The concept of a magical child who spends time on Earth has been explored before but not with these elements. The result is a wonderfully original story.
Character Development: The character of Maraglindi is sweetly open, loving, and (of course) angelic. The addition of her intelligence and musical gifts gives depth to her personality. The villains are easy to loathe, and the character growth is excellent.
Date Submitted: July 23, 2018