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Before the Knife : Memories of an African Childhood by Slaughter, Carolyn | eBay

Product Code: The stark fact that Carolyn was first raped by her father at the age of six is contained within the prologue and epilogue of this book. What lies in between is the story of an extraordinary childhood in Africa and a moving depiction of the complexities at the root of our relationships with mother, father, siblings. Written with such beauty, courage, and truthfulness that it will rank with other masterpieces about life in Africa.

Slaughter summons both the terrible secrecy and the wonder of her childhood.

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Slaughter balances moments of tranquility with those of devastation, making this brave memoir engrossing. Slaughter has succeeded in penning a chilling and compelling exorcism. Masterfully, she finally gives voice to the scream she describes as lodged in her throat. Rarely have I read such an honest memoir, as merciless as the blinding light of the African bush.

In this unforgettable memoir, acclaimed novelist Carolyn Slaughter recalls her childhood in Africa and how the land itself released her from a rage that threatened to destroy her.

ISBN 13: 9780385603447

For Carolyn Slaughter, who grew up in Botswana in the s, it was the Kalahari Desert that made life bearable. Her father was a cruel and violent district commissioner during the last days of British colonial rule, and their family's stiff English facade masked an unspeakable household secret.

But out in the bush, the intensity of the air and the beauty of the landscape touched her with a kind of feverish grace. She would disappear for hours to watch the flat brown river with its water lilies and crocodiles; the thorn trees and the flocks of flamingos; the local women with their babies strapped to their backs. Filled with the majesty and splendor of the ever-changing desert, Before The Knife" is the deeply moving story of a girl who endured and transcended her family's violence to emerge an impassioned observer and explicator of her world.

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Add to Basket. Slaughter's problem is that she has tried to write two books, one about Africa, one about abuse. For her, both are inextricably connected, but her understandable hatred towards her father prevents her from speculating on the connection between colonialism and familial abuse, or explaining how she learnt to forgive, years after the death of both her parents.

Some readers might find that Before the Knife is ultimately a little too personal for comfort. For those willing to brave the dark without a candle, illumination lies ahead' -- Margarette Driscoll, Sunday Times 'Painful, tragic family saga I read it at a breathless sitting' -- Tenniel Evans, Daily Mail 'Shows the tragic and lasting consequences of a childhood blighted by fear and hate It must, simply, be read.

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Living in the twilight of empire

Book Description Black Swan Books, Soft cover. Condition: New. No Jacket. Published In : 1st. More information about this seller Contact this seller. Carolyn Slaughter.

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