The Seagull's Laughter by Holly Bidgood
1973. Malik has always been something of a misfit. Born to a Greenlandic mother and an English-Explorer father, he has one eye of black and one of watery-blue. As a child his mother’s people refused to touch him and now his own baby daughter’s family feel the same way.
Never having known his father and with his mother and uncle dead from alcoholism, Malik’s only companion is a guiding spirit no-one else can see.
One day a white man with a nose like a beak and a shadow like a seagull appears on his doorstep and invites him to England.
Martha has had enough, living with domestic abuse and expected to turn the other cheek for the sake of appearances. She compares bruises with her friend Neil, who regularly suffers homophobic attacks. With Martha’s baby, they go on the run to Shetland, where Martha has happy childhood memories of summers spent with her aunt.
On their way up north in a camper van, they come across a dejected Malik, alone again after a brief reconciliation with his father’s family.
The three of them find peace and safety in the Shetland Isles, but Malik still needs answers to the identity of the beak-nosed man who casts a shadow over his life.
The Seagull’s Laughter is an immersive read, intertwined with the nature and magic of Greenlandic folk tales.