Hum If You Don't Know the Words
Perfect for readers of The Secret Life of Bees and The Help, a perceptive and searing look at Apartheid-era South Africa, told through one unique family brought together by tragedy.
G.P. Putnam's Sons
On Sale: July 11, 2017
Hardcover / e-Book
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Women's Fiction Historical | Multicultural
Life under Apartheid has created a secure future for
Robin Conrad, a ten-year-old white girl living with her
parents in 1970s Johannesburg. In the same nation but
worlds apart, Beauty Mbali, a Xhosa woman in a rural
village in the Bantu homeland of the Transkei, struggles
to raise her children alone after her husband's death.
Both lives have been built upon the division of race, and
their meeting should never have occurred...until the
Soweto Uprising, in which a protest by black students
ignites racial conflict, alters the fault lines on which
their society is built, and shatters their worlds when
Robinís parents are left dead and Beautyís daughter goes
After Robin is sent to live with her loving but
irresponsible aunt, Beauty is hired to care for Robin
while continuing the search for her daughter. In Beauty,
Robin finds the security and family that she craves, and
the two forge an inextricable bond through their deep
personal losses. But Robin knows that if Beauty finds her
daughter, Robin could lose her new caretaker forever, so
she makes a desperate decision with devastating
consequences. Her quest to make amends and find
redemption is a journey of self-discovery in which she
learns the harsh truths of the society that once promised
Told through Beauty and Robin's alternating perspectives,
the interwoven narratives create a rich and complex
tapestry of the emotions and tensions at the heart of
Apartheid-era South Africa. Hum If You Donít Know the
Words is a beautifully rendered look at loss, racism, and
the creation of family.
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