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One thing that relates to the novel from the author's life is that while she lived Massachusetts and studied at Harvard, the story is set on Martha's Vineyard Island off the coast of Massachusetts and refers to the Indian School then conducted by Harvard.
It is difficult to find many parallels between the story and Brook's life since she is a contemporary author and Pulitzer Prize winning journalist from Australia, who was in the U.S. on a Master's in Journalism course at Harvard, while the story is about colonial Massachusetts Puritans. Though one other thing that relates the two is that Australia and America were both British colonies.
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