Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Ten Weeks in Africa

Update: there will be a launch on Thursday 27 September Daunt's Bookshop in the Fulham Road, London.

Daunt Books,
158-164 Fulham Road,
London SW10 9PR.


An even more shamless plug: my brother, and fellow LMS Rep, 'J.M. Shaw', has just published a novel. I've just finished reading it and it is a corker: a thriller set in a fictionalised African country, revolving around corruption, civil war, and aid. Unlike most thrillers there is a moral basis to the book, which far from undermining the fun and games gives the characters depth and the story real interest.

I would say that, wouldn't I? Well what you need to do is check for yourself by buying a copy and reading it. Even better than getting it from Amazon is ordering it from your local Waterstones or other bookshop, since this will encourage them to stock it.

This is the blurb from the Waterstone's website, complete with gobblegook last sentence and the wrong name for one of the main characters (it's Kamunda, not Getonga). Hey, they sell books, but they can't read or write...

A vivid, gripping novel about corruption, integrity and good intentions gone wrong, set in an African country on the brink of civil war, for fans of John le Carre, Graham Greene and William Boyd. As Ed and Sarah Caine's plane passes over the Ngozi hills and begins its descent into Kisuru, Sarah is dazzled by the purity of unspoiled nature, the perfect environment in which to raise their son. Ed, meanwhile, as Director of the Global Justice Alliance for East Africa, looks forward to rolling up his sleeves and making a real difference in a country that seems to be developing fast. Below them, in the sprawling Makera slum, Stephen Odinga - who has to find a way of making more money for his dying mother than they can earn through the family business selling fried bananas - decides to try a more lucrative line of business. Meanwhile, Joseph Getonga, a senior official in a government that for five years has been failing to deliver on its promise to end political corruption, is feeling isolated and exposed, while others around him covertly seek personal advantage out of International Aid programmes. And beyond the hills, a rebel army seethes and waits, poised to tip the country into civil war. Before he knows it, the duplicity Ed thinks he has left behind in England will begin to infect his own family. Complicity explores, in urgent, breathtaking prose, the tensions between our ideals and our reality, the deep rifts of cultural misunderstanding and the true cost of uninformed good intentions.

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