Are two coins all a lady's reputation is worth? In 1883 Calcutta, it's more than unusual for a woman to sue a man in open court. When both parties are missionaries, and the man accuses his female opponent of sexual misconduct with a native Christian and another missionary, newspapers fly off the shelves in Calcutta, Edinburgh, and even London. But what really happened?
Sandra Wagner-Wright holds the doctoral degree in history and taught women’s and global history at the University of Hawai`i. Rama’s Labyrinth is her first work of historical fiction. When she’s not researching or writing, Sandra enjoys travel, including trips to India, South Africa, and the Galapagos Islands. Sandra particularly likes writing about strong women who make a difference. She lives in Hilo, Hawai`i with her family and writes a weekly blog relating to history, travel, and the idiosyncrasies of life. Check out Sandra’s webpage at www.sandrawagnerwright.com
This is the first paragraph from Two Coins. The voice belongs to William Hastie, incoming principal of Scottish College in Calcutta. The year in 1879. Hastie, has no particular desire to take up the post of principal, except that the position fulfills a pre-requisite for a university appointment. I didn't originally plan to open the story with Hastie, but often an outsider puts events into greater clarity.
Two Coins: A Biographical Novel (Women of Determination and Courage)
I adjust my sun hat. Topi they call it. Got it at Aden. Most of the passengers went to the nearest shop, but I found mine in a gentleman’s store. The clerk said it was the highest quality. I’m not sure I believe him, but it’s certainly better than what my fellow passengers procured.