The Way of the Women

The Way of the Women

4.04 (1,011 ratings by Goodreads)
  • Paperback
By (author) 

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Description

How can you speak when speech has been taken away? When the only person listening refuses to understand? Milla, trapped in silence by a deadly paralysing illness, confined to her bed, struggles to make herself heard by her maidservant and now nurse, Agaat. Contrary, controlling, proud, secretly affectionate, the two women, servant and mistress, are more than matched. Life for white farmers like Milla in the South Africa of the 1950s was full of promise - newly married, her future held the thrilling challenges of creating her own farm and perhaps one day raising children. Forty years later, the world Milla knew is as if seen in a mirror, and all she has left are memories and diaries. As death draws near, she looks back on good intentions and soured dreams, on a brutal marriage and a longed-for only son scarred by his parents' battles, and on a lifetime's tug-of-war with Agaat. As Milla's old white world recedes, in the new South Africa her guardian's future is ever more filled with the prospect of freedom. Marlene van Niekerk's is a stunning new literary voice from South Africa, to compare to J.M. Coetzee and Nadine Gordimer.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 640 pages
  • 152 x 232 x 48mm | 861.82g
  • Little, Brown & Company
  • New York, United States
  • 0316854395
  • 9780316854399
  • 946,488

Review quote

** 'Ambitious and loaded with a narrative energy you will not find - at the same pitch or in the same range - in the work of any of the big names in South African writing ... A masterpiece has arrived' South African SUNDAY TIMES ** 'These are huge subjects ... Without a doubt a novel of ideas but also a very musical one, an 'act of writing' in which van Niekerk poetically breathes new life and new possibility into the country' VRIJ NEDERLANDshow more

About Marlene Van Niekerk

Marlene van Niekerk was born in 1954 and grew up on a farm in the Caledon district of South Africa's Cape. She studied philosophy, languages and literature at the universities of Stellenbosch, Amsterdam and Witwatersrand, where she now lectures in the Department of Afrikaans and Dutch.show more

Rating details

1,011 ratings
4.04 out of 5 stars
5 43% (430)
4 32% (327)
3 16% (162)
2 5% (51)
1 4% (41)
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