At the pivotal moment when apartheid ends and South Africa prepares for open elections, white civil rights lawyer Vera Stark is second-guessing her family life, in this 11th novel by the late Nobel Prize–winning author of No Time Like the Present. With Vera's abandonment of her husband and children, a symbolic shift also occurs in her friendship with Didymus Maqoma—a black leader to whom she has been adviser and protector—while all of South Africa finds that more things are changing than they had anticipated, and not always for the better.
"It would be hard to find a more direct experience of the times through which South Africa has passed over the last forty years than in the intimate portrayals [Nadine] Gordimer has given us.... There are no puppets in Ms. Gordimer's work, no mouthpieces; her people are afforded the dignity of human vanity and complexity."—NYTBR