- By Anne Landsman

The Devil's Chimney

  • Title: The Devil's Chimney
  • Author: Anne Landsman
  • ISBN: 9780140277463
  • Page: 472
  • Format: Paperback
  • The Devil s Chimney In the shadows of the Cango Caves in rural South Africa lives Connie Lambrecht dazed by alcohol and devastating memories A poor white she is haunted by the disappearance of a young colored girl in

    In the shadows of the Cango Caves in rural South Africa lives Connie Lambrecht, dazed by alcohol and devastating memories A poor white , she is haunted by the disappearance of a young colored girl in a passage called the Devil s Chimney and obsessed with the story of an Englishwoman who arrived with her husband in 1910 to run an ostrich farm during the international crIn the shadows of the Cango Caves in rural South Africa lives Connie Lambrecht, dazed by alcohol and devastating memories A poor white , she is haunted by the disappearance of a young colored girl in a passage called the Devil s Chimney and obsessed with the story of an Englishwoman who arrived with her husband in 1910 to run an ostrich farm during the international craze for ostrich plumes The story of Miss Beatrice a lushly told tale of passion and transgression, violence and tragedy, retribution and redemption entwines in surprising ways with Connie s own dark secrets Set against a harsh, dazzling landscape and a social system in which the lives of women and black people are equally expendable and compared by reviewers to the works of Alice Munro, J M Coetzee, and Flannery O Connor The Devil s Chimney is an artful, lyrical, and explosive debut.

    1 thought on “The Devil's Chimney

    1. Talk about a tragic story! In some ways, the hardship and heartbreak each of the characters endures reflects the setting: the Karoo of South Africa. I visited Nieu Bethesda and surrounds in June 2010, which is wintertime in South Africa, and it is 1) so very cold because it is a semi-desert, and 2) bleak, stark and lonesome, but 3) very beautiful. Prickly pear and ostriches are farmed, but that's about it. Donkeys and rocky hills abound, wind and dust. It feels sleepy, like a ghost town that tim [...]

    2. Too much alcohol, too much misunderstandings too much deception. Interesting way of writing, an South African novel setting sort of new to me.In the shadows of the Cango Caves in rural South Africa lives Connie Lambrecht, dazed by alcohol and devastating memories. A "poor white," she is haunted by the disappearance of a young "colored" girl in a passage called the Devil's Chimney and obsessed with the story of an Englishwoman who arrived with her husband in 1910 to run an ostrich farm during the [...]

    3. This book is good. Really good. Really well written. I did not like it at all. It is full of the ugliness of South African life and past. It follows on from a long tradition of novels about South Africa that expose the ugliness to a level that is difficult to digest. It makes me sad to read all of these books and to think that possibly all of the artistic writing about South African past and present can only be this ugly. Because that is what it was. That is all we have inherited. So it is a rea [...]

    4. The writing style reminded me of Tracey Farren's Snake. Although the narrator in The Devil's Chimney is probably much more unreliable than the child in Snake. I was warned that this book was 'a lot of work' to read. It wasn't work, like Clockwork Orange, but it did require me to read slower (that's not always a bad thing). The book leaves so much to ponder. I'm surprised so few people on have it on their read list.

    5. Interesting story, about a woman taking over a farm for her husband in Africa, but went off into the metaphysical deep end near the end of the story, which I didn't particularly enjoy. I was annoyed by the use of Afrikaaner throughout the book; I had to flip to the glossary in the back, and I don't feel the sprinkling of words really added anything to the story. I got lazy and just made up my own meanings for the words.

    6. Good read. The story takes place on an farm in So Africa during a short boom when Ostrich feathers were the rage in fashion. Passionate, sensual and kept my interest.

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