Mothers and Daughters 

Reviewed By  Grasshopper2       November 17, 2014

 

Author  Kylie Ladd

Distributor:       Booktopia/Amazon 
ISBN:                 9781760110666
Publisher:         Allen & Unwin
Release Date:    

Website:    http://www.allenandunwin.com 

With the author’s words “Fiction is the best way of telling the Truth” I knew this would not be a comfortable book to read. Parenting has never been easy and identifying with someone else’s questionable decisions makes for confronting reading.

The setting of this story is magnificent and comes alive with descriptions of Broome and its surrounds. The beautiful bays and turquoise waters, the mangroves where they go crabbing, and the starry sky, make a picturesque backdrop for this story.

Amira, Caro, Fiona and Morag all live in Melbourne. They met when their children began their first day at school. Amira, a teacher herself helped both the little ones and their emotional mothers to settle and then part from the room happily. A firm friendship was established and the women caught up regularly, helped each other out many times and encouraged their children to have sleepovers. Amira was the one who organised a roster of meals when Morag gave birth to her third son, and helped out when she could. She was a single parent but was always the first to lend a hand.

After eight years it came as a great shock to the group when Amira announced that she was going to an Aboriginal settlement near Broome to teach for a year. She and her daughter Tess settle in well and gradually begin to embrace the lifestyle and the people.

The story begins with the mothers and their teenage daughters getting ready to fly to Broome to stay with Amira for a week. Morag doesn’t have a daughter, but her step daughter is sent up to meet them as she is an inconvenience at home. The girls have been apart for nearly a year and of course have grown and developed different ideas, and ways. The women share the great bond that they have always had, they laugh and drink and share stories that have previously remained hidden. The girls learn about each other again, and we see how different family values impact upon their thoughts and behaviours.

The Aboriginal component in this story is told with respect and compassion. The cultural stories and customs are interwoven although there are many issues that need addressing; Education being an important starting place. The blending of these aspects in this book makes for an interesting read.