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The Mango Tree by Ronald McKie
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The Mango Tree

by Ronald McKie

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Another Queensland lad grows up in a small town between the wars. Meets people, they influence him or vice versa, grandmother whom he lives with dies. He goes south. The mango tree gives him both real and symbolic space. Hmm. The writing is pretty good though. ( )
  broughtonhouse | May 1, 2009 |
A coming of age story in north Queensland in the 1910's, Jamie is brought up by his saintly grandmother, advised by an eccentric and drunken intellectual, and deflowered by his French teacher. Themes of Australian independence from the British Empire and the dignity of Indigenous culture emerge from the narrative. Ultimately, his grandmother and his professor die, his French teacher is transferred to another school, and his mango tree - his vantage point for looking out upon the world - ceases to bear fruit. Jamie, safe from the war that has just ended and the influenza that swept his town, thrusts himself upon the world by travelling south at the end of the story ( )
  joe1402 | Mar 9, 2009 |
From childhood, Jamie had climbed the mango tree, straining for the topmost branch. In those early years, the tree was a castled turret, a peak above the snow line, the spires of a pirate galleon. The mango tree was a friend, a challenge, a peace, a place to sulk, a place to sing impssoble songs. And as he grew up, the tree became a dreaming place, a confessional where the wind snatched his words and carried them away and the answers never came back.

Winner of the Miles Franklin Award in 1975 and later made into a movie. ( )
  Jawin | Jan 4, 2007 |
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A coming of age story in north Queensland in the 1910's, Jamie is brought up by his saintly grandmother, advised by an eccentric and drunken intellectual, and deflowered by his French teacher. Themes of Australian independence from the British Empire and the dignity of Indigenous culture emerge from the narrative. Ultimately, his grandmother and his professor die, his French teacher is transferred to another school, and his mango tree - his vantage point for looking out upon the world - ceases to bear fruit. Jamie, safe from the war that has just ended and the influenza that swept his town, thrusts himself upon the world by travelling south at the end of the story.

Winner Miles Franklin Award 1975.
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Winner of Miles Franklin Award and now a mayor film.

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