Skinner's Drift

Skinner's Drift Cover

Skinner's Drift

By Lisa Fugard

Scribner, Hardcover, 9780743272995, 304pp.

Publication Date: January 3, 2006

Ten years after leaving South Africa, the country of her birth and the place where her mother died, Eva van Rensburg returns to her dying father, a violent man whose terrible secret Eva has kept since she was a child.

In this beautiful first novel, Lisa Fugard paints a haunting portrait of a family careering toward disaster. She vividly describes the isolation of Eva's rebellious and lonely English mother; the desperation of her Afrikaner father as drought destroys his farm; the conflicts among the black farmworkers as the younger generation questions the loyalty and subservience of their elders; and the dangerous silence of a young girl who witnesses too much.

Like Nadine Gordimer and J. M. Coetzee, Fugard has written a profoundly moving family drama, subtly set against the backdrop of a country in turmoil. She moves with extraordinary agility between intimate and revelatory domestic scenes and the fiercely challenging land. This is a powerful story from a stunning new writer.