Zoe Du Plessis’s story unfolds against the backdrop of 1996 South Africa, caught in the turmoil of the transition from the Apartheid regime to the first democratically elected black government. A paleoanthropologist at Witwatersrand University in Johannesburg, Zoe’s world collapses when her lover and colleague, Dario Oldani, is killed during a fatal carjacking.
Clinging to her late companion’s memory, she sets off to the merciless Kalahari Desert to continue his fieldwork. It’s the beginning of an inner journey during which Zoe comes to terms with her sense of guilt as a privileged white Afrikaner while also confronting a secret that has hung over her family for generations. During a brief visit back home, Zoe meets an unlikely lover in Kurt, a legendary South African writer with a troubled past.
The conclusion spirals the reader into a new perspective, where atonement seems to be inextricably linked to an act of creative imagination.
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