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The Ice Palace

by Tarjei Vesaas

Will bring back memories for anyone who battled with love, loyalties and grief as well as puberty. I struggled with the book at times though - when the motives of the 11-year-old heroine seemed as impenetrable as the ice palace of the title - but found the book worthwhile because it is beautifully written and does have a happy ending.

Extract

"So you don't want to be with us any more today?"
"No, I'd rather not. You don't understand, I know. It's something I've promised," she said, startling them.

When she said it like that, they dimly realized it was a promise made to Unn, and nobody knew whether she was alive or dead.

Translated by Elizabeth Rokkan

Parallels

Whistle Down the Wind by Mary Hayley Bell
 

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