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friendship between women

Review: ‘Hum If You Don’t Know the Words,’ is a Powerful Expression of Love and Hope in the Midst of Tragedy

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Hum If You Don’t Know the Words is one of my favorite debut novels in the last year.  Bianca Marais has created a rich story line that is unique in how the well developed characters navigate very sensitive issues of the time: racism and apartheid in South Africa. In 1976, racism and apartheid was a way of life in South Africa. Here, we meet Robin, a nine-year-old white girl, the daughter of a miner and his wife. Robin’s father did not always treat black South Africans fairly and, tragically, he and his wife were murdered, leaving their daughter alone. Young Robin exhibits incredible coping skills she has developed since she was a baby and despite the culture of the country’s…

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