When the boulder came down from the mountainside, it must’ve made a sound like the end of the world, rocking the ground with each thunderous landing and recoil. It must have sung through the air, thrashing the bush on the slope into a sappy pulp with every bounce, on its way to embed itself in the lawn of the luxury holiday home below. 

Published in South Africa in 2010 by Penguin Random House, and in a beautiful Turkish edition (as Hep Eve) in 2016 from Yüz Kitap.

A wife lies to her husband, seeking refuge from her dowdy life in the plush hotel that overlooks their home. A man ascends the glass-topped dome of a mall in search of a lost childhood memory. History comes to life for a young boy trapped in the city library. An elderly woman nurses a football star back to health …

In these evocative and exquisitely crafted short stories, Henrietta Rose-Innes gives us an extraordinary glimpse into a selection of ordinary lives. Diverse characters – a teenager learning to be a boyfriend, an ageing copywriter, a girl on the brink of womanhood – are animated in sparse, sparkling prose. The Cape Town they mostly inhabit is both a playground and an obstacle course, filled with menace and delight. Through this landscape, like the pigeons in the title story, they find new paths home – and are themselves transformed by the journey.

“Perfectly crafted stories … Rose-Innes is masterful in creating multiple universes, each of which stands alone. No story disappoints … the intimate life of each character is as satisfyingly real as spending an afternoon with an intriguing new acquaintance.” – Janet van Eeden

Find this book on the publisher’s website.

Purchase here.

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