Shattered Wings


SKU paperback Category

175 in stock


By Mary-Anne Zammit

ISBN: 9781847479914
Published: 2009
Pages: 257
Key Themes: author based in Malta, rape, revenge, psychiatry, law, surivival


A novel based on the social and criminological study of the effects of rape and on the problem of recidivism of sex offenders.

The story starts with the episode of Francine a victim of rape, who turns up a killer without wanting to after killing her perpetrator. While in prison, awaiting trial, Francine is referred to the desk of Dr. Michelle a forensic psychiatrist who works in a mental institution, mainly with cases of sex offenders and who is assigned to help Francine in court. Through Francine s’ experience we learn about the long term effects of rape, its impact on her life and her journey to survival.

About the Author

Marie Anne Zammit is a graduate in Social Work and Probation Services and currently work as a Probation Officer. Marie Anne paints and writes articles, novels and poetry both in English and in Maltese and her articles appeared on various local newspapers and journals. Marie Anne s’ interest in Criminology and Mental Health commenced in 1994 when she was still a student in Social Work and was also doing voluntary work at the Prisons. In the same year Mary Anne was awarded the Youth of the Year. From there, Marie Anne followed a Post Qualification Diploma Course in Probation Services and in 1997 has been employed with the Probation Services, Malta.

Marie Anne s’ first novel was in Maltese, Id-Dell ta’ l-Ezmeraldi, a story dealing with a ‘whodunit’ theme, which was a success. This was followed by another book, Ir-Ragel l-Iswed, in 2002 the main theme of which was drugs. The latter was awarded the MAPA (Maltese Association of Publishers and Authors prize)
In 2006 Mary Anne Zammit published her third novel in Maltese Stupru which means Rape and which was also a success.
Marie Anne is Spoke Person for Health and Social Policy with the Green Party, Malta.,

Book Extract

I stood at the edge of the cliff, contemplating whether to do it or not; never had I been as close as I this, close to the angel of death who waited for me at the other side. What was I to expect now? My wound could not heal. It was going to end here, but it made no difference to me. There were only the cliffs to witness my exit, and the majestic cliffs were watching and waiting to embrace me with their steeping curves. They had witnessed more episodes over time and decades and now they waited for mine.

More known as Dingli Cliffs, they are situated in the Northern part of Malta and are a very enchanting, magical sight to see. The cliffs stand proud, facing the blue crystal sea as if watching over the splendour of the Neolithic Temples which stand erect some miles away from them; the remnants of lost civilizations. When the sun rises beneath the horizon it retells the stories of these civilizations, discerned by those souls who cherish the memories of their blueprints in time.

I remember as a child my father used to take me to the Temples. No one knows exactly how they were constructed. We only have a glimpse of their history, yet their presence is overpowering and every stone depicts a message which only the soul can grasp with its mystical overtones.

That was part of my childhood which I will always cherish. My father used to take me there whenever he had time and that’s how my visits with these monuments began; under the warm Mediterranean sun, casting its magical rays on the huge stones, my dear father used to tell me their story.

‘This was the beginning of civilization,’ he said. Then he mentioned Atlantis, the lost world, and I used to dream that the Temples were the children of that lost world.

I believed in it and cherished it in my heart. Then it changed, or perhaps I had changed with experiences which left their mark engraved on my heart, but the Temples remained there untouched, unmoved.

My feet were waiting for the next step to close this chapter of my life and defeated by the games of fate I longed to put an end to it. No, not before I say goodbye to the cliffs.

Today, it was no different and the sun was rising again, giving birth to new day. What a wonderful scene, the wheel of nature spinning from day to night manifesting the existence of life. Everything sounded in harmony with nature. It was spring, but for me it was the descending of thunderstorm, or far worse, hell. My dream faded away with the setting of the sun. Yet, they were my witness, the children of Atlantis.

There was no new day for me now and my soul could not recall the glory of its path. I felt distraught, as if I was still under the spell of nightfall. My God, what strange thoughts, but these were the only reminiscence of my experience. My dawn has not yet come, for my soul was buried beneath the horizon, perhaps never ever to surface up again. The children, their memories have deserted me and there were only tears as I waited anxiously for them to dry.

Yet, my breath still lingered on, even though my days were dead, vanished with the wind of a night which came to rob the light in my heart. I felt dead, lost in a whirlwind of doubts, confusion and shattered dreams, but my feet betrayed me and faltered. There was something holding me back from embracing the shadow, my beloved who waited for me at the other side.

Coward! I admonished myself. Why is life so tragic? I looked down and below me there were waves, deep blue waves which once overpowered me, now waiting to take me with them. The waves danced softly and I wonder how i made it to this final scene. It’s an inner void which propelled me to come here or else the feeling of invasion that has left me frigid, like an axe which cut me like ice.

With the soft breeze from the wind, the memories came back again, perhaps for the last time. They say that before one embraces death, scenes of a lifetime come again. These scenes were not my life but diabolic scenes of what occurred through the last hours.

Vividly I saw myself endeavouring to keep walking, throbbing, against my will, my desire, for all I longed for was death to take me away for eternity.

Once I had a name, Francine, but now there was only a dark shadow leading my feet along the cliffs while married to the night, to nothingness. Last night I had been defeated by lust, touched again by the hands of a beast which yielded at my vengeance, though ravished by his claws.


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