YOU (South Africa) - - LEISURE - – PAM MAGWAZA

By SIPHIWE GLO­RIA NDLOVU Pen­guin Even though this is Ndlovu’s first novel it’s writ­ten with the kind of ex­cel­lence and de­tail you’d ex­pect from an au­thor with decades of ex­pe­ri­ence.

This en­chant­ing and truly African book pulls you in with its cover art – which ba­si­cally tells the story in sym­bolic im­ages – and from the first few pages you feel as if you’re part of the fab­ric this in­tri­cate and in­ter­con­nected story is wo­ven from.

Al­though there are more than 30 char­ac­ters – which I must ad­mit did make the novel a lit­tle hard go­ing at times – it’s made up for by the sheer power of the hatched-froma-golden egg pro­tag­o­nist, Imo­gen “Ge­nie” Zula Ny­oni, the mag­i­cal cen­tre of the story.

It un­folds in an un­named South­ern African na­tion that’s just emerged from civil war. But it’s not gloom and doom – rather than dwelling on what was lost, it fo­cuses on per­sonal tri­umphs and why they mat­ter.

Each char­ac­ter has a pur­pose di­rectly tied to Ge­nie and her strength.

A de­light­ful, thrilling and heart-break­ing read that will stay with you long af­ter you fin­ish the last page.

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