The Transformation by Mette Newth

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A powerful novel about the meeting of two very different cultures in fifteenth-century Greenland

For several years, the Inuits in Greenland, the "Human Beings," as they call themselves, have suffered from unusually hard winters that do not let up even in what should be summertime. Navarana, a young Inuit woman, has lost both her parents to these terrible times of starvation and desperation. She decides to become a hunter and a shaman, a spirit guide, to help her people. Then she accidentally finds and reluctantly saves a stranger, Brendan, a young Irish monk. He has come to Greenland to help the Christian community and convert the "heathens." But the Christian community has disintegrated and, one by one, his fellow monks have died. Both proud and stubborn, Brendan and Navarana are immediately at odds. Gradually, however, as they learn more about each other, they develop a mutual respect. And Brendan is chosen to accompany Navarana on her perilous journey to bring back the sun.

About Mette Newth

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METTE NEWTH is an illustrator and translator, as well as the author of The Abduction and The Transformation. Formerly the director of the Norwegian Forum for Freedom of Expression, she is now head of the National College of Art in Oslo.
Published October 19, 2000 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR). 195 pages
Genres: Young Adult, Literature & Fiction, Travel, Children's Books. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Transformation

Kirkus Reviews

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Brendan, a monk originally from Ireland, had answered the Pope’s entreaty for priests and monks to save “the Holy Church’s farthest outpost.” Navarana rescues him, bringing him back to her settlement and back to life.

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Publishers Weekly

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Readers will be transfixed by descriptions of Navarana's desperate polar bear hunt (the sow becomes her spirit guide), and by the Old One's teachings (he explains that there is no food, for example, due to the Sea Mother, who was angry ""because Her long hair was always filthy and tangled from th...

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Teen Reads

He is like a newborn babe in the Human Being's land, and Navarana wonders how this stranger will fit in after she saves him from starvation --- a decision she must justify to the Old One.

Oct 19 2009 | Read Full Review of The Transformation

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