Barclay, Robert. Melal: a novel of the Pacific.

Author:Farmer, Lesley S.J.
Position:Brief Article - Young Adult Review - Book Review

University of Hawaii Press. 300p. c2002. 0-8248-2591-6. $8.89. A

A day in paradise must be perfect, right? No. In this tale set on an atoll of the Marshall Islands, the mythological and mundane intertwine in the lives of natives and Americans. The story takes place in 1981, but it is also timeless. Rujen Kenu works at a sewer plant, and his teenage son Jebro is set to begin working at the same site the next Monday. In the meantime, he and his younger brother Nuke disobey the American edict about not landing on the ancestral island of Tar Moj, All day on Good Friday, Rujen has an ominous feeling. His bike is wrecked, his shoes are stolen, and he destroys the Christ figure in his beloved Catholic church. His sons have his boat sunk by three drunken American teenagers, and the gods are playing with uncontrollable magic while evil lurks. What is the...

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