About Me

I ramble about a number of things - but travel experiences, movies and music feature prominently. See my label cloud for a better idea. All comnments and opinions on this blog are my own, and do not in any way reflect the opinions/position of my employer (past/current/future).

02 October 2011

Zoo City

Published last year to great reviews and many awards, including the 2011 Arthur C Clarke Award, the science fiction/crime thriller is set in Johannesburg. Although set in a parallel universe, the exploration of Johannesburg itself by the heroine (Zinzi December) - from Hillbrow, through Houghton and Rosebank, to Sandton and Midrand - is fascinating as the storyline itself.

People who have committed crimes in this parallel universe are magically attached by an animal familiar, which then create a "load" on their shoulders per se. Zinzi December is an ex journalist, recovering drug addict with a sloth familiar; who has the magical ability to find "lost" items (not stolen), as well as write some brilliant 419 scam letters.

The story weaves the tales of Africa itself - from rising musical stars and producers/hanger-ons that seemingly exploit them, muti magic to various sub plots of refugees, including the tales of the conflict in the great lakes. In fact, the sub plots of the DRC - be it the journeys that the refugees take to escape from their hell to a lesser hell, or the stories about the conflicts themselves could easily become great books themselves.

Zoo City is a fantastic story, and I am now looking to find the earlier novel by Lauren Beukes, Moxyland.

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