Cindy Williams. The Pounamu Prophecy: A Sweeping Story of Love, Betrayal and Hope. Rhiza Press, 2015. See here to buy the book.
The Pounamu Prophecy is set in Australia and New Zealand. Actually, this book was published in Australia, and my review copy was sent to me from there. I thought that was pretty cool!
Helene and James are two characters in the book. Helene and James live in Australia, and they are a married couple. Helene is a medical doctor, and James has a graphic design business. Helene and James are not getting along, and each feels unappreciated by the other.
Mere is an elderly friend of James’ mother, and she has come to stay with Helene and James. Mere helps around the house and in the garden. She is also writing a book about her life experiences. Mere is from New Zealand. She is part of the Ngati Whatua tribe. That tribe historically experienced hardship on account of the New Zealand government taking its land. When she was a child, Mere lost her brother after the water was polluted. Mere became a lawyer so that she could challenge the government’s injustice.
This is a quality book. It is well-written, striking a balance between prose that is simple and sophisticated. The marriage between Helene and James is typical of other stories about struggling marriages and the temptation to have an affair, but the characters still seemed like real people.
There were themes in the book that I particularly liked. First, there was Helene’s evaluation of the different religious options that were presented to her. Helene’s friend, Nicollette, encouraged Helene to send her wishes and requests to the universe, whereas Mere promoted a Christian approach. Helene thought that Mere’s approach was rather childish, or child-like, but she came to believe that there were problems with Nicollette’s approach. Second, there was the notion that God historically sent the Ngati Whatua tribe what they needed, when they needed it. Third, there was more to Mere than met the eye, as Helene and James learned near the end of the book.
The book is about forgiveness and loving others even if one does not feel love. What it says about these themes is not particularly new, but it is still good to be reminded of those principles and outlooks. Mere was a wise woman with credibility on account of what she had gone through. The book also taught me about New Zealand.
I received a complimentary review copy of this book through Bookcrash, in exchange for an honest review.