A Legacy Lives On
Michael Phillips writes intimately and with great knowledge about Whales Reef in the Shetland Islands. His descriptions evoke wild and rugged landscapes that will not be tamed. Here there is the ancient clan system that extends to this day.
The close community of Whales Reef depends on the protection of the clan chief to survive. As Auld Tulloch dies, so the village is thrown into disarray as the search for the legal beneficiary begins.
Meanwhile in Washington Loni Foster is searching for who she really is. Loni was bought up by grandparents following her parents early deaths. She was bought up a Quaker but rejected that way of life. Loni still believes in God . It is her identity that she questions. “Which was her real self?”
Michael Phillips shows that our foundations are important. Loni writes in her journal to God “I don’t want to forget the foundations that were built for me, that make me who I am.”Loni may have moved from her Quaker roots but the beliefs are deeply entrenched in her.
Likewise in Whales Reef David Tulloch has firm foundations. He may be the next clan chief but even if he isn’t, the welfare of all in the village is important to him. David realises that people are the most important of all. David will do the right thing by the people. He will even do the right thing and work for the good of people he doesn’t particularly like!
Within the novel, Michael Phillips shows the dangers of gossip. Gossip can fan verbal wild fires and it can spread fear. Gossip must be avoided at all cost.
The theme of a good attitude is in the novel. David Tulloch always has a good attitude and it draws people to him. In contrast American Maddy speaks of her mother “her poisonous attitude toward my father did nothing but poison herself.” A bad attitude and a hard heart is self damaging.
The whole novel explores the theme of inheritance and legacy. For some it means how much there is in assets. For others it is the legacy of character that they will leave behind. Loni speaks of God’s heart saying “the true inheritance was the people who had come before, and the legacy they had left.” People matter over possessions every time.
The Inheritance was a ‘meaty’ read. It had sections written in the Shetland dialect which were challenging to read at times.
I received this book for free in exchange for a fair and honest review. No monetary compensation was received and all views expressed are my own.