A Blade of Grass

by Lewis Desoto | Literature & Fiction |
ISBN: 9780006392804 Global Overview for this book
Registered by winggypsysmomwing of Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada on 6/20/2006
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2 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by winggypsysmomwing from Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada on Tuesday, June 20, 2006
This was my book club's pick for June of 2006. It tells the story of two South African women, one white, one black. The year isn't given but it is before the fall of apartheid when white people lived a life of ease and privilege and black people toiled for the whites.

The white woman, Marit, is a recent orphan and a recent wife. She and her husband have moved to land on the border to farm. Marit has no siblings and seems to have had no friends other than her husband and she doesn't make friends with the other farmers' wives. The black woman, Tembi, is a little younger than Marit. At the start of the book her mother, who is the cook for Marit and her husband, is killed by a hit and run driver as she walks to the nearest town in the dark. Tembi's father is a miner and has lived apart from Tembi and her mother for some time except for two weeks of holidays. After the mother's funeral he leaves and never returns. Marit asks Tembi to take her mother's job. The relationship gets off to a rocky start but after Marit's husband is killed by a land mine the two women grow very close. The political situation intensifies and Marit is advised to leave but she really has no where else to go. Through natural disasters and man-made trials Marit and Tembi persevere. The ending is sad but also hopeful in terms of the black populace of South Africa.

I thought this was a beautifully written book. The author was born in South Africa but moved to Canada and now lives, according to the bio, "in Toronto and Normandy". He obviously loves the country of South Africa but hated the political situation. In an interview at the back of the book he says he has never been back to South Africa but now he is planning a trip. I felt, while I was reading the book, like I had taken a trip to South Africa. I would recommend this book to anyone.

Journal Entry 2 by winggypsysmomwing from Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada on Wednesday, July 19, 2006
I lent this to my librarian friend at work and she agreed it was a wonderful read.

Since Lewis DeSoto now lives in Canada I am going to reserve this book for the 2007 Canada Day release challenge although I may lend it out in between.

Journal Entry 3 by winggypsysmomwing at Keyes Wayside Park in Arden Ridge, Manitoba Canada on Monday, July 02, 2007

Released 13 yrs ago (6/29/2007 UTC) at Keyes Wayside Park in Arden Ridge, Manitoba Canada



I left this book at the base of the panel explaining the Whitemud River watershed and the Manitoba Escarpment. This release is for the 2007 Canada Day release challenge. I hope the finder enjoys this book by a Canadian but set in South Africa.

Journal Entry 4 by wingAnonymousFinderwing on Wednesday, July 04, 2007
While on a vacation with family in Minnesota,(we are from outsidde of Toronto) we went on a trip to a farm outside of Camsack Saskatchewan. On route we stopped at a rest stop in Neepawa, Manitoba and while reading the description of the area saw the book propped against the sign. Now back in Minnesota, I have completed the book and have passed it on to my sister in law. I was excited to see where it started. It was abook evocative of the area and the underlying history. i enjoyed the characters and of course one could almost anticipate the ending.


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