Thursday, 18 February 2010
My Thoughts: Whole of a Morning Sky by Grace Nichols
Sticking with my recent Caribbean readings I plunged into Whole of a Morning Sky earlier today. Set in Guyana, this novel starts in Highdam a small country village where the different races live side-by-side happily. Archie, headmaster of the local school has had to work hard to implement a normal school routine in the village - teachers can no longer go home to cook a meal midway through the lesson, children are not allowed months off at harvest time. His family, despite his best attempts to keep distant, have become fully integrated in the village. They mix with the villagers, listen to the local womens dreams, spirits and beliefs.
Archie decides to move the family to the city of Georgetown in order to get his younger children a better standard of living. When he arrives he quickly sees that life here will have more influence on his children than ever before. Politics quickly impeeds their lives. His eldest daughter Dinah is soon spilling the words of a communist. His younger children are fed with the little their family can get and miss school because of the strikes and each night they watch as another neighbours house is burnt to the ground.
This novella was a great read, it started off seeming like a very simple story and came as a shock when the politics kicked in.