The book faces up to the problem of personal acceptance of an interracial community. The context is distinctively...



The book faces up to the problem of personal acceptance of an interracial community. The context is distinctively Australian; nevertheless the basics of the conflict are universal. In a way, it is unfortunate that the story is so pointed towards its issue; the way the characters sometimes frankly question, other times casually overlook, the blending of colors is handled with a particular adroitness which might have been more effective without that extra pressure. Sixteen year old Ryl had been abandoned (with a very handsome annuity) by her father when she was three; she had no knowledge of her mother or of any other relatives. Her life had been spent exclusively at the best boarding schools; the polish was burnished to the fullest sheen; she could outsnub anybody. The death of her father coincided with the end of her schooling; she and her long-lost grandfather decided to share one of the inheritances-- an antiquated farmhouse in a rural, coastal village. Out on the farm she learned to develop the proper feelings towards friends and relatives, and eventually made the discovery that her good friend Perry Davis-- a half-caste--was actually her brother. One might object that the author has been evasive by placing the bi-racial romance into the impersonal past (it looked at the outset as if Perry and Rly would turn out to be more than pals) but that is really a niggling fault. The ramifications of the problem are presented through the conversations of the teenagers (also Ryl's grandfather and his cronies) which are a convincing mixture of banter and conscientious probing. The well described scenery is an extra plus for this story which girls will enjoy reading and perhaps find thought-provoking. Better than most teenage friction fiction.

Pub Date: Feb. 17, 1966


Page Count: -

Publisher: Coward-McCann

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 1966

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