“It is a monstrous bruise of a sky. Thunder mutters and pounds the horizon sending vibrations through the slumbering city.”
This is modern Lusaka where the line between juju and religion is blurred, the arcane and the mundane muddle and nothing is what is seems.
Under the surface lurks Luse, a sharp street child combing the gang-ridden city in a desperate search for Doctor Georgia Shapiro who can offer her a way back into her once-bright past. The Doctor is trying to unravel the mystery of her friend’s sudden death while mourning the new gap in her life and the AIDS crisis laying waste to the country around her. Meanwhile the Blood Of Christ Church and its enigmatic leader Priestess Selena Clark gain traction in the community with their murky promises of salvation and violent clandestine rituals. A small silver box links the three in ways they cannot imagine and will force the women to question who they trust, who they are and for who they fight. Witch Girl is a pacy crime thriller that juggles the past and the present effortlessly and whose magic holds the reader hostage until the final page.
In a Zambia that is experiencing the disintegration of family units as HIV/AIDS takes hold, the Blood of Christ Church makes its mark by distributing a film entitled Witch Children, a film about child demonization, where children feed off their parents. Eleven year old Luse’s father and mother are both HIV-positive activists, living healthy, happy lives. But once the family becomes involved with the Blood of Christ church, everything changes.
How is it that Luse and her little brother Joshua have ended up living in a storm drain in Lusaka, searching for someone named George Shapi? How did they come to have a special box from Harry the Rasta that holds answers about what happened to the missing Danish filmmakers who were investigating the highly secretive and heavily guarded Blood of Christ Street Child Rehabilitation Centre?
Through a unique blend of issues such as witchcraft, AIDS activism, religious extremism, Tanvi Bush weaves together a thrilling narrative with vivid descriptions and unforgettable characters.
Tanvi Bush grew up in Lusaka, Zambia. She later studied in UK, reading English and Theatre at Exeter University then Film Production at the Northern School of Film and TV. In the late 90’s Tanvi set up the Willie Mwale Film Foundation in Zambia and was the producer of the Oscar-nominated documentary ‘Choka- Get Lost!’ (2001) which centred around a gang of young HIV/AIDS orphans living on the streets of Lusaka. In 2010 Tanvi completed an MA in Creative Writing at Bath Spa University and is currently undertaking a PhD. She lives in Corsham, Wiltshire with her guide dog, Grace.
‘Tanvi Bush is the real thing – a writer with nerve, verve, humour and courage. Read her!’
“Through a unique blend of witchcraft, AIDS activism, religious extremism, Tanvi Bush weaves together a thrilling narrative with vivid descriptions and unforgettable character. An excellent novel – accomplished, evocative and involving. Highly recommended.”
Emmeline Burdett, Disability Arts Online
“Bush’s prose is spare and fast-moving, like water over river stones. The narrative unfolds effortlessly, moving back and forth in time without disorienting the reader. Though Witch Girl, at times, reads like a crime novel and the plot feels slightly forced toward the end, these flaws can easily be forgiven because of the novel’s engaging characters, the richness of its Zambian setting, and its accurate depiction of the countless tragedies that have unfolded there. It is well worth the read.”
Heather Sharfeddin, Colorado Review
“An astonishing fast-paced thriller with a unique and unforgettable hero whose adventures will grip you to the end of the book. A blend of magic and dark reality that will take you to places that you have never been and introduce you to a wealth of characters brave, beautiful and horrifying. Tanvi Bush writes with skill from a rich background of detailed knowledge of her subject but never for a moment forgets that she is telling a cracking good story. Luse – the hero is a completely original and new creation.”
Ruth Hartley, GoodReads
“Brilliantly increasingly tense. Characters are beautifly created and real. Love authors choice of words, style of writiing. Lovely, real, come-to-life descriptions of flora and generally, the surroundings in scenes.”
Era Gorska, GoodReads
“Does all the things a good book should do… gripping, interesting, created empathy and anger, and was original in its narrative.”
J.F. Sebastian, Amazon Reviewer