Doreen Crick didn’t dream about becoming an author, but at 83, she realized her three children and four grandchildren didn’t know much about the dark history of their Caribbean heritage so she began to research and to write.
“Like many people, they saw the Caribbean as a great vacation destination. They didn’t know the history of colonialism and slavery there,” said the author who is originally from Saint Kitts but now lives in Nova Scotia.
Over the next two years, she would write and publish two books with Tellwell. Seawater: Women’s Voices from the Shores of the Caribbean Leeward Islands is the history of several Caribbean islands, told through the laughter and tears of the women who were slaves.
“I wrote about how we survived around slavery. I didn’t focus too much on the devastation but rather on how we managed to cope with it, how we conquered our emotions to survive,” said Crick.
Seawater chronicles what happened in the 17th century when the British arrived in the Caribbean Islands of Anguilla, Nevis and Saint Kitts with slaves from Ghana to set up sugar and cotton plantations. But, in the book, Crick focuses on the women and children rather than the men.
“My school history books were about European men – whether they were scoundrels or heroes,” she said. “I wanted to share a different history about women and children.”