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Win one of five copies of The Sealwoman’s Gift by Sally Magnusson, valued at $29.99 each.

In 1627 Barbary pirates abducted 400 people from Iceland, including a pastor’s wife. The raid is well documented, but little is known about what happened to the women and children afterwards. Author Sally Magnusson imagines what happened to Asta, the pastor’s wife, who deals with her loss with the one thing she
has brought from home: the stories in her head.

To enter, tell us who abducted Asta.


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The Sealwoman's Gift

In 1627 Barbary pirates raided the coast of Iceland and abducted some 400 of its people, including 250 from a tiny island off the mainland. Among the captives sold into slavery in Algiers were the island pastor, his wife and their three children. Although the raid itself is well documented, little is known about what happened to the women and children afterwards. It was a time when women everywhere were largely silent. In this brilliant reimagining, Sally Magnusson gives a voice to Asta, the pastor's wife. Enslaved in an alien Arab culture Asta meets the loss of both her freedom and her children with the one thing she has brought from home: the stories in her head. Steeped in the sagas and folk tales of her northern homeland, she finds herself experiencing not just the separations and agonies of captivity, but the reassessments that come in any age when intelligent eyes are opened to other lives, other cultures and other kinds of loving. THE SEALWOMAN'S GIFT is about the eternal power of storytelling to help us survive. The novel is full of stories - Icelandic ones told to fend off a slave-owner's advances, Arabian ones to help an old man die. And there are others, too: the stories we tell ourselves to protect our minds from what cannot otherwise be borne, the stories we need to make us happy.


Terms and conditions

1. Entry is open to all residents of Australia and New Zealand from 1 to 28 February 2018. 2. Employees and the immediate families of the promoter and agencies associated with this promotion are ineligible. 3. The judge’s decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into. 4. The first correct entries drawn from the competition on 1 March 2018 will win a copy of the book. 5. The promoter accepts no responsibility for late, lost or misdirected mail. 6. The winners of the prizes will be notified by email in March 2018.