Beduins Gazelle

Frances Temple, Author
Frances Temple, Author Scholastic $15.95 (160p) ISBN 978-0-531-09519-5
Reviewed on: 03/04/1996
Release date: 03/01/1996
Library Binding - 150 pages - 978-0-531-08869-2
Paperback - 150 pages - 978-0-06-440669-7
Prebound-Other - 978-0-606-12887-2
Prebound-Other - 150 pages - 978-0-613-07324-0
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The barren desert ""sand sea"" of the Middle East plays backdrop to romance, intrigue and adventure in this sequel to The Ramsay Scallop. Halima and Atiyah, cousins betrothed since birth, look forward to a happy married life as part of their nomadic tribe, the Beni Khalid. But their wicked uncle Saladeen, recruiter of young warriors for the jihad, has other plans-he forcefully delivers Atiyah to the city of Fez, where, under threat of potentially bloody retaliation, he must study religious ways at the ""greatest university of Islam."" At Fez, Atiyah meets Etienne, the young French pilgrim who befriended heroine Elenor in Ramsay. While Atiyah is away, Halima has woes of her own when she finds herself captured by a rival desert tribe. The novel's climax involves Atiyah's and Etienne's rescue of Halima and the political ramifications of their derring-do. Told in short, rapid chapters, Temple's briskly paced story is fueled by a cast of complex, emotionally resonant characters, easily visualized in full exotic costume. Her descriptions of adolescent angst in 1302, while steeped in vivid period detail, will be equally relevant to contemporary readers. Temple is at the top of her game here, deftly handling societal issues with a spirited style. Sadly, this posthumous volume is the second in a planned but unfinished trilogy. Ages 12-up. (Apr.)
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