Lalani of the Distant Sea

Publisher: Piccadilly Press

Lalani lives on the island of Sanlagita, a place where plants struggle to grow in the relentless sun, and where people live in fear of the spirit of the nearby Mount Kahna. Ruled by a cruel menyoro, Sanlagitans obey his demands for complete loyalty yet continue to suffer for what he describes as their sins and impure thoughts.

No-one is allowed to leave the small village and venture onto the mountain - yet when Lalani meets Ellseth, a strange, horned being on Mount Kahna, she realises that there is great magic on the island.

When Lalani's mother gets ill from the mender's disease, an infection from a pricked finger, Lalani decides that she will attempt the perilous trip across the monster-filled sea to nearby Mount Isa, where she had heard a plant grows that will heal her mother. But how will she be successful where so many men have failed?

Erin Entrada Kelly's novel is woven with mythological stories which explain how the island came to be, and what forces protect it. Alongside Lalani's story of resistance against the cruel men in her village, her love for her mother and her bravery against the magical forces of nature, this is a stunning, magical book about what happens when we don't understand and respect nature.

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