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Playing in the light

Wicomb, Z.C. (2006) Playing in the light. New Press. ISBN 9781595582218

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Abstract

From the acclaimed South African novelist, a lyrical tale of self-discovery in post-apartheid cape town. Set in a beautifully rendered 1990s Cape Town, Playing in the Light revolves around Marion, a woman of Afrikaner background, who hates traveling but nonetheless runs a travel agency, and her complex relationship with Brenda, the first black woman she has ever employed. In writing as finely detailed and attuned to psychological nuance as Anita Brookner's, Wicomb depicts the life of a complicated, single woman in a changing and complicated place. Caught up in the narrow world of private interests and self-advancement, Marion eschews national politics until the exposures of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission lead to the discovery of a skeleton in the family cupboard. While her aging father is unable and unwilling to supply the truth, Marion's young employee becomes implicated in the piecing together of Marion's past, leading to a defining transformation and widening of Marion's world. In this impeccably wrought new work, the acclaimed author of You Can't Get Lost in Cape Town provides wisdom and insight about the new South Africa and about people everywhere.