First time around, I read Laurinda in a single day. This time, it's taken me more than ten days. And I still haven't managed to sort out my feelings about this novel. The queens of the Cabinet are so awful, yet so powerful -- I don't understand how the principal gives her tacit approval to their actions, yet still seems to believe in Lucy. There's a lot going on in this book and I can't shake the impression that Pung herself hasn't fully worked through her own attitudes about privilege, origins and power. But then, who has? So much of this novel is powerfully written, simultaneously punchy, yet delicate and authentic -- but I can't quite seem to shake it down into a coherent whole.

I'm looking forward to discussing Laurinda with the Convent book group. Those smart ladies will help me work out what I think!

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