Vanessa Del Fabbro, Author, Vanessa del Fabbro, Author . Steeple Hill $12.95 (320p) ISBN 978-0-373-78537-7

After South African journalist Monica Brunetti is robbed and shot while researching a story in a black township, she is taken to an all-black hospital. There she confronts the possibility that she may never walk again and the reality of her own smoldering racism, which becomes apparent as she cultivates a unique friendship with the young woman in the bed next to hers. Ella Nkhoma, a former ANC activist who is the mother of two lively boys, is supposedly in the hospital to recover from a bout of bronchitis, but is actually suffering from a far more deadly disease. Del Fabbro, who was born and raised in South Africa, offers a fascinating window into the stark beauty and random violence that characterize the "Rainbow Nation," where racial hatred still threatens the fragile peace that has been won. Through dynamic characters and an unflinchingly honest perspective on human weakness, Del Fabbro concocts a winning story of the triumphant power of female friendship. (Apr.)

Reviewed on: 03/28/2005
Release date: 04/01/2005
The Best Books, Emailed Every Week
Tip Sheet!