Five days before Christmas, Detective Sergeant Emmanuel Cooper sits at his desk at the Johannesburg major crimes squad, ready for his holiday in Mozambique. A call comes in: A respectable white couple has been assaulted and left for dead in their bedroom. The couple’s teenage daughter identifies the attacker as Aaron Shabalala - the youngest son of Zulu Detective Constable Samuel Shabalala - Cooper’s best friend and a man to whom he owes his life. The Detective Branch isn’t interested in evidence that might contradict their star witness’s story, especially so close to the holidays.
Determined to ensure justice for Aaron, Cooper, Shabalala, and their trusted friend Dr. Daniel Zweigman hunt for the truth. Their investigation uncovers a violent world of Sophiatown gangs, thieves, and corrupt government officials who will do anything to keep their dark world intact.
"Historical hindsight may make readers a bit more self-congratulatory about recognizing the evils of apartheid, but it won’t help them see around the curves Nunn has plotted or rise above her insight into the enduring dilemmas of her separate-and-unequal world." (Kirkus Reviews)
"A disturbing book with a morally compelling hero." (Booklist)
"Gripping and thoughtful...Nunn brilliantly combines character and fair play clues." (Publishers Weekly)
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