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by Nozuko Siyotula
What a wonderful way to start the new year – a local debut novel written in a fresh voice by a young South African while she was working in China!
Christopher is many things.
It’s a book about a contemporary young graduate grappling with the complexities of living in this country. Pregnant with twins, Vuyo is mourning the death of her Scottish-born husband and has come home to her family homestead in rural Eastern Cape.
It’s a book about the two generations of strong-willed January women who came before her as well as their partners and the lives they lived.
It’s a book filled with the evocative and distinctive landscapes of the Eastern Cape – the hills, the fields and the rivers as they flow into the sea.
It’s a book set over the course of one Easter weekend which like the patron saint, Christopher, follows its characters on their journeys of self-discovery and healing.
It’s a book about different cultures, different generations, different expectations and different dreams and about how understanding what went before, helps explain where we are now.
Mostly, it’s a book full of hope written with warmth and wit. I thought it was a beautiful, insightful and moving book about growing up in this complicated land we call home. Please read it.