Before I Forget
By (author) Andre Brink
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Before I Forget by Andre Brink
Book DescriptionChris Minaar is a distinguished South African writer, an old writer, but a writer who has lost whatever gift he had for writing. It is on New Year's Eve, courtesy of his stalled car, that he meets Rachel, a young sculptress who becomes the great love of his life, a love greater for being unfulfilled. He finds himself captivated by Rachel and drawn into a close friendship with her husband. As their friendship develops, Chris must reconcile himself to an unaccustomed type of intimacy but one that inevitably threatens this precarious triangular relationship. Woven through this is the story of his life and of a lifetime's loving. For he has known many women. As it becomes clear that this book is the final writing act of Chris's creative life, so we understand that these recollections are an attempt to bring order to an otherwise chaotic existence. Before I Forget is the history of a life set against the history of a nation, and the history of a transforming love.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780099477525
(197mm x 130mm x 19mm)
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Publish Date: 1-Sep-2005
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Andre Brink
Philida, Paperback (February 2013)
The year is 1832 and Cape is rife with rumours about liberation of slaves. Philida is the mother of four children by Francois Brink, the son of her master. Francois has reneged on his promise to set her free and his father has ordered him to marry a white woman from a prominent family, selling Philida on to owners in harsh country in the north.
Fork in the Road, Paperback (April 2010)
Tells the story of a life lived in tumultuous times. In this title, the author describes with searing honesty his conflicting experiences of growing up in a world where innocence was always surrounded by violence and storytelling was a means of reconciling the stark contrasts of his world.
Praying Mantis, Paperback (August 2006)
In his early years, growing up on a Dutch farm in the deep interior of the southern African Cape, Cupido Cockroach became the greatest drinker, liar, fornicator, and fighter of his region. Coming under the spell of a woman, and Dr Johannes Theodorus van der Kemp of the London Missionary Society, Cupido is then made the first Hottentot missionary.
Other Side of Silence, Paperback (September 2003)» View all books by Andre Brink
As a small child in wintry Bremen, Hanna dreams about escaping from years of abuse in the orphanage and in service. She joins a shipload of young women transported in the early years of the 20th century to the colony of South-West Africa to assuage the needs of the male settlers.
US Kirkus Review » A famous, progressive, aging South African writer salutes all the women he has loved in this latest from the famous, progressive, aging South African Brink (The Other Side of Silence, 2003, etc.).It's 2003, and 77-year-old Afrikaner novelist Chris Minaar is losing his two greatest loves: his mother (Mam), and a beautiful sculptor, Rachel Lombard. Mam, only occasionally lucid at 102, is about to die in her nursing-home; and Rachel has died already, from brain injuries, the result of a brutal highway murder. Their stories are interwoven through those of the other women Chris has known, but it's Rachel's that predominates. They had met by accident. Rachel was married, happily, to George, a globe-trotting photographer, and her relationship with Chris was platonic, but nonetheless intense. They talked incessantly and unabashedly about love, its connection to time, the nature of orgasms and so on. Chris also hit it off with George, and the three became best friends. This did not stop Chris from rhapsodizing about what Rachel exemplified: "The taste of women, which is beyond the taste of fruit and wine." Before Rachel, there was Daphne, Bonnie, Aviva, Nicolette . . . it's a long list, but Chris denies he's playing a numbers game. For him, each woman is unique and irreplaceable, but that's not all; Chris the anti-apartheid activist declares, "every turn . . . of history over the last century, I could mark with the memory of a woman." This makes for contrivance, as when the assassination of Prime Minister Verwoerd spurs his marriage to Helena. It's his only marriage, and it ends horribly. Arguing with her about his latest infidelity, he causes a car accident, killing Helena and their young son. Chris is curiously reticent about the tragedy, no doubt because it shows him in a bad light; elsewhere, he presents himself as a sensitive lover, never insistent, always willing to let go; there's also the implication that he must have been one helluva stud.Cloying and pretentious. (Kirkus Reviews)
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Author Biography - Andre Brink
Andre Brink is the author of several novels in English, including A Dry White Season, Imaginings of Sand, The Rights of Desire and The Other Side of Silence. He has won South Africa's most important literary prize, the CNA Award, three times and has twice been shortlisted for the Booker Prize.
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