Sister Light, Sister Dark
In the land of the Dales,Jenna--with pure white hair and dark eyes--takes her first breath, as her mother takes her last. Rejected by her father, the midwife heads off toward the Hame, a community of women, intending to leave the infant there. This midwife, in turn, loses her life to a wild cat while on the path. The baby's rescuers, Selna and Marjo of the Hame, become Jenna's foster mothers only to die a short time later. Thus, Jenna becomes motherless three times. As she grows, her intelligence and skill, particularly in the warrior arts, far surpass the other girls'. Could Jenna be the one, the Anna, the hero that the prophecies foretold?
"Sister Light, Sister Dark" is a pleasant, quick read with strong female characters. One major element, however, makes it stand out from others of this type. The author doesn't merely tell the story. She presents from several unique perspectives. The plot (i.e. what 'really' happens)is just one layer. It alternates with myths, legends, folk songs and scholarly articles by historians, all of which combine and distort elements of the plotline. As a person who loves to read about ancient history, I find this structure fascinating. It makes me wonder more than ever about the connection between the old tales and historical reality.