Balthasar’s Gift continues the tradition of pacy, hard-boiled South African crime fiction.
This title has already been published to critical acclaim in Germany.
Maybe it was an error for crime reporter Maggie Cloete to ignore the call from the softly-spoken man. Now he is dead. Someone put four bullets in Balthasar’s chest. It is post-apartheid South Africa, at the turn of the century. In Pietermaritzburg, capital of KwaZulu-Natal, the ANC rules. However, in the townships and villages, fear and superstition rule too. Is it a political murder? Maggie’s instincts are on red alarm, and during the search for the truth, she comes up against both gangsters and politicians – and has their henchmen on her tail. However threats and attacks against her make her even more stubborn and determined. She learns too much about Balthasar’s life and his work at the AIDS Mission to be distant and professional. She is deeply, and dangerously, involved. Balthasar’s Gift continues the tradition of pacy, hard-boiled South African crime fiction.
Charlotte Otter is a South African living in Germany. She writes feminist crime fiction. She is a journalist by training, and began her career as a trainee reporter on The Witness and The Star, before working at The Citizen as a crime and court reporter. She then moved to Anglo American and De Beers to do corporate communications. Charlotte relocated to Germany in 1996 to work for the German technology company SAP. She then freelanced for many years, writing for De Beers, SAP World, SAP Spectrum, EMBO encounters, Buzzine and the South African Marie Claire. She now works at SAP as a corporate communicator.
Balthasar’s Gift is the hard-hitting overture to what we hope will be a long series.
Abrasive, fast and instructive.
Balthasar’s Gift is a scorching debut.
“A terrific debut, one that strikes a neat balance between lively pacing and frenetic action and carefully considered social commentary”
The author’s passion and outrage ignite every page of this fast-paced thriller. Highly recommended.
The plot is both inventive and exciting, and entwines it in the politics and social stigma of HIV and AIDS in South Africa.
one of those rare novels that achieves a superb balance between being a fast-paced thriller and an informative read. As a reader, I gained deep insight into an area about which I previously knew little. The author’s style of writing is punchy, with her never using an extraneous word, yet managing to paint an extremely vivid picture of South Africa.