SUMMER SECRETS by Jane Green (Pan Macmillan). Recovering alcoholic Cat tries to make amends for her past but, as it collides with the present, she finds it harder than she’d hoped. Cuts to the quick of family relationships. Meeting the teacher with whom she had an affair as a schoolgirl offers Fiona an exit from her marriage. But a young woman’s allegations force her to look at her past in a new light. Unsettling and compelling THE GIRLS by Lisa Jewell (Century). In a safe communal garden square in London, all the neighbours let their children hang out together, but who is to blame when one of them is found unconscious? A dark, ominous story. MY MOTHER’S SECRET by Sheila O’Flanagan (Headline Publishing). A surprise 40th-anniversary party thrown for Jenny and Paul by their three children provides the moment for an announcement that none of them are expecting. was eight hours home from the hospital; three days since the birth. It was the black middle of the night, and I was standing at the bottom of my stairs, holding the banister. There was my auntie, perched on my sofa, singing to the Oh you cannae push yer granny off a bus It’s only Irene, dear, she said, meeting my eye, no need to look affrontit. But all I was thinking was: where had she found that blanket to swaddle him, the one I thought I’d lost, blue, satin binding, hollow-knit? And: how had she tucked the corners in, so neat, like a parcel?
John went back to London. I said, thickly. Because it was him, maybe, had given her the key. Is that so? said Irene. I made you a coffee. Hot milk, with bitter speckles of Nescafe. I hadn’t drunk such a thing in years. The cup wasn’t exclusive short story mine, either – thick and white, with a saucer. Crawford’s, that’s where it came from: Crawford’s coffee shop, 1980, me skiving out of school with my pals. People smoked on buses then, and this was a cappuccino. I thought you’d be wanting a woman about the place, said Irene. Now the wee gentleman’s here. Irene shifted the baby so he was in profile to me, his neck on her arm, his tiny folded nose and chin grave as pharaohs. He looks like you, I said. Irene’s nose was hooked over her mouth, too. She looked at the baby, pushed out her teeth, pushed them back and clicked her tongue in agreement, pleased. And she’s surprised, your Mum, she said to the sleeping baby. But we’re not surprised, are we, the precious poppet? Irene had seventeen years on my mother, they were always saying that. She was so old, now.
Her perm was rigid as the Queen’s, and she had no calves, just bone. Her brown stockings were loose, her court shoes like coffins. The baby’s legs were the same, they didn’t have any muscle. He was loose in my hand as washing, and I couldn’t sleep for the worry of holding him up. When you’ve finished that coffee, said Irene, you should go off to bed. I’ll sit up with the little one, if that’s alright by you. I need to feed him, I said. But I didn’t really want to. I was all scooped out inside, like a breakfast egg with a horn spoon, and I had fourteen stitches across my belly. Irene waved a bottle at me – a strange, narrow bottle with a rigid pink nipple. I’ll give him a nice drink. Never you worry, she said. I went back upstairs, remembering the bottle. It was the one I’d fed my Tiny Tears with, the one I’d dropped down a grating at the bottom of our tenement stair in 1968. Irene was singing, again: You can push yer ither Granny off a bus, You can push yer ither Granny For she’s yer daddy’s mammy Ye can push yer ither Granny off a bus. What a terrible thing to say, she murmured to the baby. Isn’t that a terrible thing to do to yer Granny? The speed those buses go, round George Square. When I woke up, Irene was gone.
Adapted religious forms also served as means by which the native peoples could confront European colonialism. In the 1760s, Neolin, a prophet among the Lenni Lenape (also known as the Delaware) exerted great influence among eastern Native Countrys. Neolin used the tactics of evangelical Christianity to spread a pan-native, anti-white message. He believed that whites and Native Countrys had been created as separate races of people and that white people had obstructed the indigenous peoples’ access to heaven. To remedy the situation, he preached, native peoples should band together and reject the trappings of Euro-Country life. Neolin’s teachings inspired the widespread anti-British campaign known as Pontiac’s Rebellion. They also laid the groundwork for later revivalist movements, the most striking of which took hold among the Shawnee in the early nineteenth century and in Handsome Lake’s religion in Iroquois country. Matthew Jennings See also: Native Countrys; Religion (Chronology); Religion (Essay); Document: John Eliot and His Work with Native Countrys (1670). Bibliography Carmody, Denise Lardner, and John Tully Carmody. Native Country Religions: An Introduction. New York: Paulist, 1993. Deloria, Vine. God is Red: A Native View of Religion. 2nd ed. Golden, CO: Fulcrum Publishing, 1994. Gill, Sam D. “Religious Forms and Themes.” In Country in 1492, edited and with an introduction by Alvin M. Josephy, Jr. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1992. Tinker, George E. “Religion.” In Encyclopedia of North Country Indians, edited by Frederick E. Hoxie. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1996.
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