Atlantic Monthly. Sept. 2011. c.480p. tr. from Afrikaans by K.L. Seegers. ISBN 9780802119933. $24. F
Award-winning crime fiction author Meyer demonstrates his superb gift for bringing together several disparate plots, striking characters, and vividly drawn scenes of contemporary South Africa, all roaring toward a climax with more than one surprise. Milla Strachan, a discontented, fortyish housewife with journalistic yearnings, leaves her suburban family and takes a job writing security reports for the secretive Presidential Intelligence Agency. She becomes involved with a man who is being chased by her bosses and the CIA as a murderer and possible terrorist. Meanwhile, Lemmer, a professional bodyguard last seen in Blood Safari, is fighting gangsters while inadvertently smuggling black rhinos. Muslim terrorists lurk in the background of both plots. Elsewhere, Mat Joubert, a cop from Dead Before Dying who is now in private security, seeks a missing husband and a pile of money.
VERDICT With a fine eye for detail, an unflattering image of South African culture, and clear sympathy for the downtrodden, Meyer still never loses his focus on page-turning suspense and riveting mystery. Highly recommended.
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