More than a hundred years ago, a boy named Samkad thinks he knows everything about the world. He knows the mountains he lives in. He knows his people. He knows his blood enemy, the Mangili. And he wants to become a man, to be given his own shield, spear and axe to fight with. His best friend, Luki, wants all the same things – but she is a girl, and no girl has ever become a warrior.
But everything changes when a new boy arrives in the village. He calls himself Samkad’s brother, yet he knows nothing of the ways of the mountain. And he brings news of a people called ‘Americans’, who are bringing war and destruction right to his home . . .
Another book that I picked up with little knowledge, other than it’s on the long-list for the Carnegie 2019 Award.
Gourlay talks of trying to bring to life her own Philippine history, and it is certainly a story that encourages us to walk in someone else’s shoes awhile and to consider the impact our presence might have on others.
A brief yet compelling read, which will certainly generate discussion about some of the issues covered.