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Born in Barbados in 1931, Margaret Knight was educated in Barbados and England. After studying nursing in London, she trained as a secretary and joined The Barbados Rediffusion Service. The first of her three marriages involved relocations to British Honduras and America, and much travel. Her second marriage, in London, brought her four children. Her third marriage took her back to Barbados, where she became a single working mother. She joined the Barbados Democratic Labour Party, and rose to the position of personal secretary to the late Prime Minister, Errol Barrow. After Barrow’s death, she continued to work for the new Prime Minister until her retirement in 1991. A natural writer, she was, for many years, a regular columnist for two Barbadian publications and won first prize for her short story “Tantie Rosita”.
Originally published in 2004, “Ginger Lily” was Margaret’s first novel. Together with three novels which followed, “Easter Lili”, “From Flying Fish to Kippers” and “The Healing Tree”, Margaret’s books have all become bestsellers, not least because of her ability to create engaging characters and page turning storylines which capture the very essence and atmosphere of life in Barbados throughout the latter half of the 20th Century. She manages to entertain while successfully incorporating the more serious issues of the ever present racism and classism which, to some extent, persist on the island to the present day.
on March 03, 2012 :
This was the marvellous debut novel by Margaret Knight, with 3 more great books which follow. The characters jump off the page and the social atmospheres both in Barbados and in England in the mid to late 20th Century come alive on every page, especially as it relates to racist attitudes. And yet this is certainly not a 'heavy read' by any stretch of the imagination. It is at once funny, sad, revealing, witty and thought provoking.
(reviewed within a month of purchase)