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Meeka Walsh

Winnipeg, Turnstone Press, 1989. 125pp, paper, $9.95
ISBN 0-88801-136-9. CIP

Grades 8 and up / Ages 13 and up
Reviewed by Louise Griffith.

Volume 17 Number 5
1989 September

Ordinary Magic is an interesting, well-written travel book and diary that readers from twelve to ninety-three would thoroughly enjoy. Its four sections tell of a physical journey that coincides with stages in the author's development as a strong, independent, mature personality.

The first section is dated Winnipeg, late September 1987. Here Walsh's lawyer calls to tell her that her divorce has gone through although she still questions what happened to her marriage and to herself.

The second section deals with a trip to Israel and Rome with her husband, son, father-in-law, and other relatives over New Year's 1985-1986. The third and longest section describes her visit to Moscow, Odessa, and Leningrad in March 1987 after the break with her husband. The final section, entitled "A Sense of Wonder," recounts how she and her daughter picked wild straw­berries by the roadside just south of Gimli, Manitoba, as she had done before with her mother and grand­mother. From the prairies she looks back on her visit to the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow and she thinks of the endless possibilities that lie ahead of her. She has come to terms with her life.

The book is recommended for reading or study by those who are interested in art, ballet, travel, Jewish heritage, or facing up to a personal problem and finding a satisfactory resolution. Librarians in elementary schools will want it for their good readers. Librarians in secondary, post-secondary and public libraries will also be wise to choose it for their collections. I look forward to reading more by this lively, talented, thoughtful writer.

Louise Griffith, Agincourt, Ont.
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