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  • What we need, wrote Franz Kafka, are books that affect us like some grievous misfortune, like the death of one whom we loved more than ourselves. Carolyn Slaughter's Before the Knife is such a book ... Slaughter's bravery has resulted in a book so searing and powerful that words cannot easily do it justice. It must, simply, be read.

    Evening Standard
  • Hypnotic... deeply moving and disturbing... For those willing to brave the dark without a candle, illumination lies ahead.

    The Sunday Times
  • Painful, tragic family saga... a brave book, beautifully written and full of vivid imagery...I read it at a breathless sitting.

    Daily Mail
  • Shows the tragic and lasting consequences of a childhood blighted by fear and hate...writes with lyrical imprecision about the primal innocence and beauty of the Arfican way of life.

    Sunday Telegraph
  • Her language is powerful, visceral... she forcefully conveys that jittery, powerful, intoxicating thing - that thing of Africa, that thing that, once you love it, you don't escape.


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