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Absolution

by Patrick Flanery

In a paranoid society, under or after apartheid, repression and fear twist and politicise motives and loyalties so that relationships are betrayed and die. Only creative writing can recreate reality and enable understanding and forgiveness. This book offers a deeper, psychologically nuanced take on the realities of South Africa today, way beyond media platitudes.

Extract

As you walked, your thoughts began to fill with the deaths of others, and your own inevitable death, and the absence of Sam - an absence you felt in the weight of the bag on your back, the mesh of red vinyl bearing into you, opening and inhabiting you. The thought of deaths you had caused - the deaths for which you alone were ultimately responsible - filled the whole of you, was played into fullness by a song beating through your memory. You were deep inside yourself, absorbed, death filling you past the point of contentment ... sweetened by the thought of your own death, the death that must come, that might arrive within the hour or the next day.

Parallels

Cry, the Beloved Country by Alan Paton
The Life and Times of Michael K by J M Coetzee
 

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