Book - 2004
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Tahitian life begins with Welcome into the World rituals. After a new baby is introduced to her living relatives she is taken to the cemetery to meet the dead. And after her baptism, a tree is planted in her name. Materena Mahi has the perfect tree for her daughter, Leilani--a beautiful frangipani.

Fourteen years later, it's time for another ritual--Materena's "Welcome to Womanhood"speech. But the traditional words of motherly wisdom aren't appropriate for Leilani, who is already smart enough to know that old wives' tales aren't true like the facts in her encyclopedias, and that science takes precedence over superstition. Leilani is every bit as smart and inquisitive as Materena wanted her to be. So why is Materena praying to the Virgin Mary for the strength to resist throwing her daughter into the street?

Célestine Hitiura Vaite's irresistible novel is filled with wisdom, laughter, and two of the stubbornest women you will ever meet. It's such a vibrant, colourful slice of Tahitian life you can almost smell the frangipani.

Publisher: Toronto : Penguin Group Canada, c2004
ISBN: 9780143052647
Branch Call Number: F VAI NVD


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Nov 13, 2009

This is one of a trilogy of books featuring Matarena and her family and as such it's easy to miss the point and not notice the lovley language and colourful insight into the lives of Tahitians. I really love the series as a whole but with out its siblings this feels a little random. I really recomend searching out 'breadfruit' and 'taiere' to get the full picture. You wont be sorry

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