The Divine Wind’ is a book/novel written by Garry Disher. The novel is set in the Pearling town of Broome which is located in the North-western region of Australia. The novel explores prejudice, friendship, love and betrayal. The novel is mainly set in World War 2, with Hart as the main character. Hart is the narrator of this story, he is retelling his story during WWII with all the problems that he faced. The novel displays “ the dislocation and emotional suffering people experience when their lives are severely disrupted”.
There are two main characters that endure this feeling of isolation, dislocation and severe disruption. Ida Penrose and Mitsy. Ida Penrose is a character who showed a lot of emotional suffering after her life was severely disrupted. Ida is the mother of Hart and is married to Michael Penrose. Ida doesn’t like Broome she always is complaining about as her hometown is in England. ”You could say that, unlike the rest of us, she did not have red dirt, mangroves or pearls in her blood”. Hart said, when he was talking about his mother.
Ida didn’t fit in Broome with the locals, even though her decision was very hard on Hart, Alice and Michael, who was very deeply in love with her, but hart understood a bit why she left. Ida loved England, she tried to build a English life style also made Hart and Alice read English children’s books. ”We knew Ida wanted only to feel less at odds with the world in which she found herself. She had no-one to talk too and no-one wanted to listen. ” Ida’s racial views also put a great strain on her family; she scorned Hart and Alice for talking to Mitsy and the divers on Michael’s luggers.
Mitsy is also another character which displays emotional suffering throughout the novel. Mitsy is an Australian, But a decent from Japanese parents, although she lives in Australia, her heart lies in Japan. With the Japanese invading the Pacific shores, Mitsy along with many other Japanese in Broome were getting racially abused as Australians were scared of being invaded. This was hard times for Mitsy as there was war between her native land and her current home land also her current home as told by this quote. Next year is the 2600th anniversary of the Empire. We’ve taken up a collection to send home. ” Home? Alice said, raising her eyebrows. Mitsy scowled. You know what I mean”. The strain of the war puts a huge load on Mitsy’s life, the death of her father, slandering by the locals and frustration from Hart when the Japanese sunk the boat Alice was working on and presumed dead. “I felt a spurt of burning tears and said to Mitsy, You Bitch”. The war is an extremely awkward time for Mitsy as her friends are joining the army to fight the “Japs”.
It’s like her friends are going to war with her as well. She is stuck in the middle not sure what side she is on, even though she was born and spent her whole life in Australia. Overall, the mental and physical suffering of Mitsy and Ida affect their decisions further into the novel. Ida decides to return home to England where unfortunately she gets killed by the Luftwaffe bombing raids in London. Mitsy decides along with her mother Sadako to go and live in a Japanese Internment Camp in Tatura, Victoria to escape the way they have been treated by the locals.