Titles

The Cry of the Hangkaka

The Cry of the Hangkaka

R220.00

Anne Woodborne

The Cry of the Hangkaka is the story of young Karin  and her mother Irene. Shamed by a divorce, Irene seeks to flee with her daughter from post WWII South Africa.

The Cry of the Hangkaka is the story of young Karin  and her mother Irene. Shamed by a divorce, Irene seeks to flee with her daughter from post WWII South Africa. Jack, a Scotsman who works at the tin mines in Nigeria, seems to be the answer to Irene’s prayers. In the torrid heat of the Nigerian plateau, Karin is exposed to the lives of the colonisers, colonised, and most of all to the dictatorship of Jack.

Anne Woodborne

Anne Woodborne

Anne Woodborne was born in Cape Town, where she still lives. She spent a large part of her childhood in Scotland and Nigeria. She has been widely published in women’s magazines, and in various anthologies and collections. She is working on her second novel, and has written and illustrated two children’s books for her grandchildren.

I read, late into the night, cast adrift with Karin, a young girl struggling to make sense of a nightmarish adult world, her only anchors a beautiful, capricious mother and a sadistic step-father, her only salvation school and the joy of reading whatever she can get her hands on.

With jewel-like clarity, with writing that is as fluid as it is creative, Anne Woodborne brings a colonial mining town in Nigeria to life. She steps into Karin’s life, inside her very skin, into a steaming, claustrophobic world, as harsh and hard as the call of the Hangkaka; as surreal and exotic as a waking dream. I read compulsively, hoping Karin would find a way to escape, hoping she wouldn’t … because then this beautifully nuanced story would come to an end.

Máire Fisher