‘Ginger Lily’ charts the joys, trials and tribulations of family and social life in Barbados in the latter half of the 20th Century. With wonderfully drawn characters, author Margaret Knight integrates humour and wit with the serious issues of racial and class prejudice which pervaded Barbadian society at the time, and interracial relationships which were very much frowned upon.
Samantha’s childhood playmate, the wealthy, handsome and amiable Tony Brownfield, has been dating Sam since her return to Barbados from boarding-school in England. Her racially obsessed father, her mother and sister all assume that Sam will marry this eligible white bachelor, who is well placed in Barbadian society.
But Sam has lost her heart to Albert Wetherby, a bold young black farmer from the nearby village. The family butler cautions Sam against Albert and her clandestine meetings with her lover. But Sam’s confidante, a gay antique dealer, encourages her to follow her heart. With money inherited from an aunt, Sam elopes with Albert to England, far away from the small-minded, class-conscious community of Barbados.
But trouble stirs almost as soon as they reach England and gradually, Sam comes to realise that Albert has his own agenda and is not the loving husband that she thought he was.
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