Set on an isolated island, within a somewhat primitive matriarchal society, where islanders barter "broideries" and fish with men from the mainland (I'm assuming this is adapted from elements of real Scottish culture). Snake Ropes weaves a fairytale based around the voices of two very different young girls, each seeking to uncover their family's secrets. Mary's younger brother has gone missing and she is determined to find him, despite the best efforts of the island women to foil her. Morgan is plotting her escape from behind the locked fence her parents have erected, whether to try to keep the islanders out or to keep their daughters in, it is never quite clear. Like all the best fairytales, it's often uncertain what is supernatural and what is reality seen through the adolescent character's inexperience. Despite its apparently simple, fairytale language, it manages to deal with difficult issues, leaving me with the sense that Snake Ropes is a powerful, female tale of memory, community and, ultimately healing.