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Andrew Brown's Potent Mix of Love and Genocide Hits the Shelves this Month

InyenziAndrew Brown will see his debut novel, Inyenzi, re-launched by Zebra later this month.

When it was written in 2000, little interest was shown in the then-unknown author’s work, so Brown – a SAPS reservist sergeant and not one to take rejection lying down – published Inyenzi himself. A small print run meant limited exposure, despite the work’s receiving critical acclaim (see “Praise for Inyenzi” below).

Then Brown won the 2006 Sunday Times Fiction Prize for his Stellenbosch police thriller, Coldsleep Lullaby – also published by Zebra. Between his newfound fame and the quality of his “new” book, interest in Inyenzi is expected to be very high this time round!

Set in Rwanda at the time of the mass killings in 1994, Inyenzi combines the dramatically opposing themes of love and genocide. It follows three lives caught up in a latter-day African holocaust: Melchior, a Hutu priest in a rural community; his childhood friend, Victor, head of the local police; and Selena, a Tutsi woman from the city – and Melchior’s secret love.

In the eyes of the Hutu extremists, Selena is a cockroach, or inyenzi – the word the Hutus used as a rallying cry in eradicating their Tutsi countrymen. Against a backdrop of tragic proportions, Brown’s novel tests childhood bonds, personal morality, love and the need for self-sacrifice.

Praise for Inyenzi

‘You will keep turning the pages to the very last one, so powerful is the love story’ – Cape Times

‘One of the best novellas to come out of Africa in ages’ – Financial Mail

‘An intelligent, finely drawn evocation of a beautiful, suffering country’

‘This is a valuable book in that it brings down to earth the facts of the post-holocaust century’ – Cape Argus

‘Andrew Brown is a graceful and eloquent narrator who crafts a delicate blend of devastating non-fiction and lucid story telling’ – Marie Claire

‘The novel is relevant and it is hoped that it will inspire observers and the people of Rwanda to document a history of what should never have been’

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