Saturday, October 01, 2011

Small Acts of Amazing Courage by Gloria Whelan

small actsSmall Acts of Amazing Courage takes us to India, where Rosalind lives in a beautiful home with many servants.  Her parents are English, and they are expected to send their children back home to England to get proper educations.  Independent-minded Rosalind doesn’t want to go to England, a country she feels no connection to.  Rosalind loves India.  She loves to explore the bazaars of the city with a native friend.  Her father returns from the war in 1918, and finds out that Rosalind has become involved in the lives of beggars, and has gone to listen to the rebel Gandhi speak at a street demonstration against the British.  He is livid and, over the protestations of Rosalind and her mother, books a passage for her to London.  He plans for his daughter to live with her aunts while getting a good English education.  Free-spirited Rosalind has other ideas.  She sees the whole world as a place to discover.  She wants to learn by getting involved rather than by just sitting on a school bench.  This, or course, gets her into all kinds of trouble, as you can well imagine. In Small Acts of Amazing Courage we read about Rosalind growing up in luxury in an exotic country, exploring bazaars, buying a baby from a beggar to save his life, always letting her heart guide her rather than her head.  It is a beautifully written book.  Review by Trudy Walsh

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