A Blade of Grass
3 journalers for this copy...
Set on the border between South Africa and an unnamed country, A Blade of Grass is the taut story of two women, one white and one black, who struggle to save their farm and, ultimately, their lives. MSrit, a young woman of British descent, recently orphaned and newly wed, comes to live with her husband, Ben, on their new farm. Despite its Edenic setting, the land explodes in violence and tragedy, and MSrit finds herself caught in a tug of war between the local Afrikaner community and the black workers who live on her farm. Frightened, she turns to the only person who can help her, a young woman who is now also alone in the worldùher maid, Tembi.
As the novel builds to its devastating climax, it unfolds a tale both terrifying and hopeful, moving beyond its own time and place to become a universal story of the price of freedom.
Tembi is a young black worker in the farm, full of rebellion and also with her own dreams.
When violence erupts and Margit is widowed she is forced to look for help. The local Afrikaner community is not very welcoming and is leaving the countryside in fear. The black workers on the farm have no desire to obey a white mistress. Margrit refuses to leave and turns to Tembi for assistance.
This is a novel that questions all our values. Who does the land belong to? The purchasers, the workers, the natives or the animals? The countryside is described in breath-taking beauty. The only nit I have is that I wish a few situations were better described. Still, a wonderful novel that makes the reader think.
Tembi and Marit have many troubles to contend with, including some distrust in each other, and their friendship is pushed to the limits. The story feels so real because it's not always happy and in fact becomes quite depressing at the end. The beginning was a bit slow but about half way through it I was having troubles putting the book down because I wanted to know what was going to happen. It's interesting to read a book about Africa and the tensions there as I haven't read many books on this subject. I enjoyed it!
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