Customer Reviews for

The Call of Zulina

Average Rating 4
( 25 )
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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 25 Customer Reviews
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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 9, 2012

    Good book

    I thought this was a good book, anxious to read the other books to see where the characters wind up. Not a preachy book, but faith does come to play.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 10, 2010

    Deep Calls to Deep

    Few books call so poignantly to that deep place within us as The Call of Zulina by Kay Marshall Strom. Even as the Scriptures tell us that "deep calls to deep," so do the convicting words of this epic tale call to the God-given conscience within us, that part of us that is stamped with the very image of God and that forbids us to love with anything less than our very lives.
    From the moment we first meet the lovely but naive Grace Winslow to the instant when we see that noble and selfless image of God rise up from deep within her, we find ourselves challenged to that same depth of commitment. This is more than an entertaining story, though it is that. But it is also a call to arms, a challenge to "fight the good fight" without compromise or lukewarm faith. The Call of Zulina is a call to believers everywhere to remember that there is no greater love than to lay down our life for our friends...and if need be, our enemies as well.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 28, 2009

    Slavery at its worst

    This is a good book. This is an interesting subject with Grace a daughter of a Black Princess and White slave trader but neither black or white. How Kay weaves the story its interesting and very captivating. I was crying at times with emotion and the book had me captivated. This is a moving book and deal in a real way about slavery and the way it was looked on. After reading books like this it just shows how bad slavery was and the whole slave trade and made me feel so sad for those people. There is alot of emotion and true courage in this book and I would recommend everyone read it. Its the type of story that needs to be read so we don't forget what did happen but at the same time make sure it never happens again. Thanks Kay for a wonderful thought provoking and emotional book cant wait for book 2.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 4, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Such an original historical fiction!

    I am so excited to see the variety of settings and plot lines in Christian fiction that I have been reading lately! "The Call of Zulina" is a perfect example of originality in writing. The author, Kay Marshall Strom, got the idea for some of the main characters when she was writing a biography of John Newton. She then developed this amazing story about Grace Winslow, the daughter of a white English sea captain and a black African princess. They are living in Africa, but Grace never really sees life outside their home (or compound). Consequently she has no concept of what is really going on around her, especially the fact that her father and mother run one of the largest slaving houses in the area. When she realizes that her parents are going to marry her off to a horrible man that she detests, just because he has good business holdings, she decides to run away. The only problem is she runs right into slavery of her own, imprisonment and then when her captors try and ransom her, she finds abandonment at the hands of her parents. She must decide which blood runs stronger in her veins, the English or the African. And she must come to terms with the fact that she will never be accepted by either side, especially her mother and father. When the slave revolt happens, where will she be?

    This story was so original that I absolutely couldn't assume or predict anything - I loved that! The hardest part of it for me as a mother of six was the sheer evilness of her own mother. Revenge runs so strongly in her veins that she doesn't hesitate to not only leave her daughter for dead, but she wants to personally make sure that she and any she cares about are all dead. I would say that is not realistic, except that it makes perfect sense in the context of her own upbringing and how her own father sacrificed her to a white man for his own advances.

    I am really looking forward to book #2 in this series. Great historical fiction in a new setting and with a new story!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 31, 2012

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 21, 2012

    good book

    really enjoyed this book

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  • Posted March 20, 2012

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    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 12, 2012

    Great historical fiction

    This book is an eye-opener as to how slaves were treated. This is why I love historical fiction. I did not like studying history in school, but to learn it this way is interesting and easy.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 12, 2012

    Interesting

    Interesting.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 8, 2011

    It had potential

    I have wanted to read this book for a while. I think that the premise is very sound and intriguing. The idea of a ¿ African ¿ English girl torn between two worlds has a lot of potential. I did not however feel that it drew on even a fraction of it. It never seemed to go anywhere. The characters did not develop for me and it just seemed to jump around a lot. There was a lot of violence that did not seem to accomplish anything and none of the relationships that you would expect to develop happened. A bit disappointing for me.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 17, 2011

    Great Idea

    I have wanted to read this book for a while. I think that the premise is very sound and intriguing. The idea of a ½ African ½ English girl torn between two worlds has a lot of potential. I did not however feel that it drew on even a fraction of it. It never seemed to go anywhere. The characters did not develop for me and it just seemed to jump around a lot. There was a lot of violence that did not seem to accomplish anything and none of the relationships that you would expect to develop happened. A bit disappointing for me.

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  • Posted September 2, 2009

    1st in Grace in Africa series is both powerful and poignant

    The Call of Zulina by Kay Marshall Strom is book one of the Grace in Africa series. Living in Africa in 1787, Grace Winslow has been raised with all of the finer things in life; education, beautiful clothing, and a luxurious home, but she's lacking the one thing that matters most: freedom. The daughter of an African princess and white slave trader, she's trapped between two worlds. In an attempt to escape from betrothal to a repugnant man, she flees the family compound only to be captured as used as a pawn between the tribes fighting for their freedom and her parents desire for wealth and power. Grace's growth throughout the story is truly amazing. She starts out as a young, naive woman convinced that just around the corner is someone who can rescue her, but after witnessing and experiencing unimaginable violence, she starts to become a strong, spirited woman of God. Strom perfectly renders the utter hopelessness of the slaves in the fortress of Zulina. There is no way out and no place to go if they could escape. The cover of the book is misleading as it looks like a standard historical romance, but this book is anything but with its unflinching depiction of slavery and the characters' fight for hope. I can't wait to read the next book in this series.

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  • Posted August 5, 2009

    Tough topics served with a smile

    Kay Marshall Strom's new novel Call of Zulina (the first in the "Grace in Africa" series) dives head first into a time and place few of us know much about, and fewer care to confront. The story gets its inspiration from a place known as Goree Island in the country of Senegal in West Africa, a hub of the slave trade to Britain and America in the late 1700s. Millions of men, women, and children languished there in chains until enough salable souls collected to fill a slave ship. The conditions weren't suitable for dogs, let alone human beings.

    In Kay's fictionalized story, young Grace Winslow lives in naive luxury in the shadow of Zulina, the slave fortress owned by her British father and her African princess mother. Her parents' marriage of convenience is loveless and abusive, a lifestyle that Grace is determined not to repeat in spite of her father's wishes that she marry a wealthy but boorish Englishman. Grace's bi-racial state is another enigma in an environment where most blacks are slaves and most whites own them. Where and with whom does Grace belong? Her escape from the family compound leads her on the journey to answer that question. But in the process, she discovers much more than she had expected-or wanted-to know.

    The plot is fast-paced and, at times, the book was hard to put down. Strom has an uncanny way of making a setting come alive with her wonderful, imaginative descriptions. I could easily feel the "blast of hot wind" that "gusted in the faraway voices of the ntumpane-the talking drums." Occasionally, I fumbled with some "head hopping" within a scene or chapter, but that certainly didn't deter me from wanting to know what would happen to Grace, and how she would escape the dismal dungeon of Zulina.

    Although the story addresses some horrific human indignities and cruelties, Strom writes so graciously and passionately that one feels more informed and edified than ashamed of being white. The message of redemption weaves its way throughout the storyline as her characters show us hope in the midst of hopelessness-and virtue that can rise above evil.

    The book is certainly appropriate for teens and adults-and recommendable as an introduction to the realities of slavery, both past and present. The author's Christian worldview is evident but not overt, giving the book good crossover appeal.

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  • Posted July 5, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    This is a strong look at the full slave trade business

    In 1787 in the Gold Coast of West Africa, Grace is the adult daughter of English sea captain Joseph Winslow and African Princess Lingongo. Grace's maternal grandfather forced her mom into a marriage of convenience in order to keep his people safe from the slave trafficking. Seeing no wrong with having slaves or forcing his daughter into marital servitude, Joseph informs Grace and Lingongo he has arranged her marriage to haughty pretentious, English visitor Mr. Hathaway; who firmly believes his people and nation are doing a favor with the Africans.

    Not only does she reject the snobbish superiority of her intended, Grace recently learns the family business is slave trading that has given her a very high standard of living to include her beloved enslaved Mama Muco to her horror and shame. Grace also realizes in some ways she and her mom are domestic slaves with no choices. She decides to take a choice as she flees into the night only to become embroiled by the passionate plea for freedom of Cabeto as he leads a slave revolt against their masters and traders at Zulina.

    Timely with Congress working the long overdue apology, this is a strong look at the full slave trade business from deals of all sorts and the treatment of the enslaved. The cast is solid on both sides of the issue; especially surprisingly the Europeans. It is not just the traffickers who see it as the divine right of the superior white man's burden to "care" for these human animals. The romance between aptly named Grace (as noted in the introduction John Newton went from slave transporter to abolitionist to Amazing Grace hymn writer) and Cabeto seems unneeded and forced. Still fans will appreciate this powerful realistic look at the destructiveness of slavery as Kay Marshall Strom states Zulina is Goree Island in Senegal, enhancing the case we must never forget less we repeat the horrific indignities.

    Harriet Klausner

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    Posted June 30, 2011

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    Posted May 4, 2011

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    Posted January 16, 2012

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    Posted December 16, 2011

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    Posted December 12, 2012

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    Posted August 10, 2012

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