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Reminiscent of the spare, lyrical voice of Isak Dinesen (“I had a farm in Africa . . ."), Singing Magic is the painfully frank while poignant memoir of a girl raised in the farmlands of Ontario and French Canada in the 1940s and 1950s, who then moved to South Africa in the late 1960s and witnessed the tumultuous dismantling of apartheid. Throughout are rich descriptions of people and places in rural Canada and remote regions in South Africa. (“'You’ll eat dust,' my friend predicted. . . . She knew I hadn't the slightest idea of what lay ahead.”) The child with the beautiful voice finally found the lyrics to the wild, gypsy music that possessed her, in the strong, pitch-perfect lines of this strangely compelling book.