‘Look what the fucking dogs did to them, someone muttered. No one mentioned the rope, or the monkey-wrench, or the gun, or the knife, or the stick, or the whip, or the blood-stained boots. In fact, no one said much at all. It seemed simpler that way. There was no sense in pointing fingers.’
From the author of The Mayor of Mogadishu, a mesmerising examination of a small town trying to cope with a trauma that threatens to tear it in two.
These Are Not Gentle People is as much a journey into the heart of modern South Africa as it is a gripping tale of crime, punishment and redemption.
The book will be out from Pan Macmillan in September.
‘These Are Not Gentle People is a South African tragedy. Page after page reveals the painful truth, that the sun has set on Mandela’s Rainbow Nation. Dreams and hopes of a better future have been silenced by fear, racial tension and a disengaged political system. The lives of the characters, from the landless and poor blacks, to the white landowners caught in a vortex of fear and oblivion, are a true reflection of South Africa’s unfinished business – building a country that belongs to all. For the people of Parys, that dream is elusive and the contestation for a place under the sun, is fierce, brutal and deadly. A gripping and painful read, told with empathy and nuance. These are not gentle people, is an uncomfortable reminder that the past is not over.’ – Redi Tlhabi
‘Every so often a book comes very close to defining a nation. In this extraordinary, fast-paced and exquisitely written true story, South Africa’s brutal and divided past, its complex present and contested future collide in an explosive narrative of murder, race, class and human cruelty. This is In Cold Blood meets Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. Believe me, Andrew Harding has given us an instant classic.’ – Justice Malala