Having mentioned the political tone of the novel I also have to marvel at the beauty of the country it is set in, the toughness of its people and their desire to protect and maintain their culture, plus the fact that it is so very old. They possess and practise ceremonies, traditions and beliefs that their ancestors did over two and a half thousand years ago! Their artistic expression of this is colourful and enthusiastic, and also reflective of a strong sense of who they are and who they have been for all that time. The most I know about my ancestors was that they farmed somewhere in Britain and my first ancestor in this country was a convict accused of stealing fourteen sheep! I consider this a fairly interesting background but it pales into insignificance in comparison to that of Hamma and Showgar.