The Story of an African Farm
ISBN 9780140431841 | 304 pages | 24 Feb 1983 | Penguin Classics | 5.07 x 7.79in | 18 - AND UP
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This novel is one of the most astonishing, least expected fiction masterpieces of its time and one which has had an enduring influence. Two cousins grow up in the 1860s on a lonely Bible-dominated farm in the thirsty mountain veld. Em is fat, sweet and contented, a born housewife; Lyndall, clever, restless, beautiful... and doomed. Their childhood is disrupted by a bombastic Irishman, Bonaparte Blenkins, who claims blood ties with Wellington and Queen Victoria and so gains uncanny influence over the girls' gross, stupid stepmother... As the story of Em and Lyndall's two careers - both in their way tragic yet fulfilled - is taken to its end, we learn not merely of a backwater in colonial history but of the whole human condition.