The Land of Spices
Mere Marie-Helene once turned her back on life, sealing up her heart in order to devote herself to God. Now the formidable Mother Superior of an Irish convent, she has, for some time, been experiencing grave doubts about her vocation. But when she meets Anna Murphy, the youngest-ever boarder, the little girl’s solemn, poetic nature captivates her and she feels ‘a storm break in her hollow heart’.
Between them an unspoken allegiance is formed. That allegiance will sustain each through the years as the Reverend Mother seeks to combat her growing spiritual aridity and as Anna develops the strength to resist the demands of her background.
About the Author
Kate O’Brien lived in London and also in Spain, where she developed a passionate and enduring love of Spanish literature and culture. One of this century’s greatest novelists, her fiction broke new ground in Irish writing by by giving central importance to women’s struggle for selfhood in a rigidly sex-stereotyped society.
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