Author: Esther Henry
Release Date: October 7, 2011
Published by: Xlibris
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
In the deepest jungles, in the most remote part of New Guinea, a young girl is just becoming a woman in her small and close-knit village still undisturbed by the outside world. Nali dreams of changing timeless traditions in her village, of love, of her future which is about to be decided for her as the elders decide who she will be given to in marriage. Follow Nali as she begins her journey into life itself to see if all her dreams come true or if they will be shattered into pieces.
My thoughts: Brilliant! Ok, I'm going to be completely real here...have you ever had a friend/acquaintance say "I'm writing a book." or "All I want to do is write someday"? I can't tell you how many times I hear people say that and in my sassy head I hear "oh God this'll be bad!" Well, I am here to say that I am HONORED that I know Esther and got to know her when she worked in our district! This book was just brilliant!
I do NOT usually read many cultural books. I always want to but have a hard time getting through them and all too often give up and pass it on to Rachel who loves them. NOT the case this time! I flew through this one. The writing is just so good! The story is unlike anything that I've ever read before. The villagers are absolutely fascinating. Completely different from any people I've learned about before and knowing that she actually lived in a village just like this for 10 years just makes me love the writing even more!
Final thoughts: A fascinating look into a group of people living in the deepest reaches of the jungle, where a young girl with all the same hopes and dreams of any other young girl lives. I just loved these characters!
You have GOT TO give this one a try! Plus, it's a steal as an eBook for about $3.50 or so for Kindle or NOOK.
Level: I don't usually put this in, but this is definitely a high school/YA and up book. I would not recommend this for middle grades.
My thoughts: What an amazing novel. I had never learned about this culture before and was fascinated by the gender bias against women. My developed nation background struggled with the abuse against women and the fact that women are worth less than the cattle. I did end up crying, but the story was worth it!