THE SCATHACH AND MAEVE'S DAUGHTERS by Mary Alexander Walker

THE SCATHACH AND MAEVE'S DAUGHTERS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

In the eighth century, a Scathach (a Celtic shape-shifter who embodies "the magical spirit of human survival") appears to Maeve Moira as an old woman who endows her and her female descendants with powerful qualities for survival: for generations to come, they will be tender and swift as the doe, loyal as the she-wolf, and as fiercely able to preserve themselves and their loved ones as the dragon. Taking place at 400-year intervals, three more stories follow: Maeve Gwenna, assisted by the Scathach in the form of an eagle, escapes an unwelcome suitor and flees to a Welsh valley where she makes a new alliance with a young Viking; Maeve Brigitta helps her community through a brutal winter in 17th-century Canada with the help of an Iroquois medicine woman who demonstrates a cure for scurvy; and, in the near future, Maeve Nicole is a young vet coping with urban blight when the Scathach turns up (in the book's funniest scenes) as a bag lady--and also as a parrot. The idea is promising, and the details often interesting (though wild melons in the Canadian wilderness don't seem likely); but the development of each period is sketchy, while the heritage of fine qualities is not exhibited to particularly telling effect in any of the generations. Only mildly interesting.

Pub Date: Oct. 30th, 1990
ISBN: 689-31638-0
Page count: 119pp
Publisher: Atheneum
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1st, 2000




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