An exploration of the Afrikaner psyche, from the Second Boer War to the present, including their deeply ingrained racism. The characters are generally not pleasant, but they are sympathetic. It is important to remember their humanity, as Damian Barr explores the fear and hatred that created them. A difficult but essential book - and so beautifully written.
For the first time, Johannes didn't get to his feet as she walked towards him, something her father always did for her mother even at home, an old-fashionedness she'd secretly enjoyed. She knew she was a bit late but this wasn't why Johannes remained rooted at their usual table.
'This is Irma,' she said, while the waiter pulled her seat out trying to work out what delicious new drama was unfolding. 'Your Irma.'