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Preview — The Syringa Tree by Pamela Gien
The Syringa Tree
In this heartrending and inspiring novel set against the gorgeous, vast landscape of South Africa under apartheid, award-winning playwright Pamela Gien tells the story of two families–one black, one white–separated by racism, connected by love.
Even at the age of six, lively, inquisitive Elizabeth Grace senses she’s a child of privilege, “a lucky fish.” Soothing her worrie
"There was nothing gorgeous about Clova-except the feeling you had when you were there. It was just a simple place, a beloved refuge in the looming, graceful shadow of the Soutpansberg Mountains, five hours north of Johannesburg ...more
IT Ended up being a little hard to follow. It was well written and an interesting story. IT might be because it was a play first and then she turned it into a novel. Because of the flow of it I gave it three stars but these are the things I liked about it ... Also there is a glossary at the end. I wish I would have known that when I started it.
I just started this book and am only on page 50 but it is so descriptive I love it. I'm having some problems getting through all the South African terms b ...more
What I loved too was the memories it stirred up - the names of things I had long forgotten, the be ...more
A novel filled with the reality of family lives during the era of apartheid: the loves, the losses, the hopes of all.
I read it on a NOOK so my tears didn't dampen the pages but they did fall.
It isn't one of those books that I suprisingly love but the story and the way it was written was enjoyable.
The girl Elizabeth was, her thoughts, family and what she experienced in life were written in a not boring, read it already way. This story is about Afrika, just before the Apartheir started to be mentioned. And even though the ...more
What a remarkable tale of growing up in South Africa during apartheid... it inspired me to research the history of South Africa (at a Wikipedia level, for the moment, but perhaps at a Michener level soon ;) And by the way, apartheid only ended in 1994. Good grief; I'm embarrassed I wasn't absolutely incensed throughout my life, but instead I was blissfully ignorant in that my-goodness-that's-far-away-and-foreign kind of way).
I find myself thinking about this book regularly, which is, t ...more
I would recommend this to (young) women, anyone who has every left a cou ...more
The language was difficult to understand because of the different dialect. There is a glossary at the back of the book which most of us didn't discover until we'd already struggled through most of the story. And as one member of my book club pointed out, there is a problem if they have to put a glossary at the back of the book. The narrator is unconvincing as a six year old girl. The writing is very random and sporadic. The book is full of non-essential charac ...more
I gave it 3 stars.
If you like books about South Africa, then I would recommend two books (true stories) by Alexandra Fuller, "Don't Let's Go To The Dogs Tonight" and "Cocktail Hour Under The Tree Of Forgetfulness".