A magical, lyrically told tale that will appeal to both young and old readers, The Secret Child
weaves ancient Celtic history with the harsh realities of nineteenth-century South Carolina.
When Marika’s father gives her up to become the young bride of Jacko, the leader of a gypsy clan, she and her brother begin the long trek to her new home. The journey is interrupted when her brother becomes ill and dies. Needing time to reconsider the life awaiting her, Marika decides to stay with Maggie, the widow who tried to save her brother.
But Marika’s gypsy upbringing makes her an oddity in her new home. With the help of Joseph, a free black man, she leaves for the magical light-and-shadows world of the heavily forested Carolina Bay, where she finds a home among the Fairies who inhabit the area. Though protected by the spirits of the forest, Marika is also pursued relentlessly by Jacko, and she soon learns that she too is capable of certain mystic abilities.
Ultimately Marika must decide whether she wants to continue living among the fairies or never again have the opportunity to be a part of their magical world.