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CALL ME RARAOU, if you please, I was born in Rampartville, the capital city, even if it’s only a provincial capital. Guess I was around fifteen when we left the place, me and my ma and half a loaf of dry bread between us, a couple of months after they pilloried her it was, they were still celebrating that so-called Liberation of theirs. Not even a team of wild horses could ever drag me back there. Ma neither, Buried her right here, I did, in Athens, the only luxury she ever asked for, her last will and testament. ‘My child, I’m dying, but grant me my last wish, bury me here. I never want to go back there. (She may have been born in the place but she never said the word “Rampartville”.) I don’t care how you do it, just get me a lifetime grave. I never made you do anything else. Don’t you ever let them take me back, not even my bones.’ The Daughter, Matesis’s famous novel set in Greece during the war, looks at how far a woman will go to protect her family at a time of great upheaval, and the consequences suffered as a result. The story is told through the eyes of Raraou, now a renowned actress, who recalls a childhood when her mother was forced to sleep with the occupying forces so as to feed her children. Afterwords, reviled by the villagers, she attempts to rebuild her shattered life. But this is more than a portrait of one family: it also delineates a country at war not only with a common enemy – Nazism – but also of Greece’s turbulent post-war period.