"This is more than a touching story of personal tragedy. Wendy Kann paints an unapologetic and thoughtful view of a different kind of minority. She is first a settler: a white Zimbabwean, brought up in a privileged but dysfunctional cocoon of expats, alcoholics, and hardbitten farmers. She is later an improbable African immigrant: a Western-looking woman bewildered and alone on the streets of New York. Her candid treatment of race is refreshingly free of political correctness, her tales of bridging cultures are insightful and thought-provoking, and her family’s searing history is penned with honesty. Best of all, her lovely words reflect an introspection and grace that are sometimes borne out of so much hardship."
—Sarah Erdman, author of Nine Hills To Nambonkaha: Two Years in the Heart of an African Village
"Wendy Kann's book - like Jeannette Walls's the Glass Castle - kept me up all night. It's one of the most beautifully-written, harrowing, compassionate non-fiction books I've read in years. Written with fierce love and a kind of sun-forged courage, it's heartbreaking, almost unbearably real, and incredibly hopeful."
—Alexandra Fuller, author of Don't Let's Go To The Dogs Tonight and Scribbling The Cat
"I was very affected by this accomplished memoir. Wendy Kann, with often heart-breaking and evocative detail, has brought back a small gem from her colonial experience of Africa." —Carolyn Slaughter, author of A Black Englishman and Before The Knife: Memories of an African Childhood
"Wendy Kann's courageous memoir is marked by loss - of a mother and a father, of a country, of a sister. Her work is remarkably free of sentimentality. Instead she writes eloquently about her and her sisters increasingly desperate struggle for love and sense of belonging in a family disintegrating at the same time that a brutal civil war breaks out in Rhodesia. She vividly captures the fear and denial and disbelief of her fellow white countrymen in the years preceding independence. Though painful at times, her journey back to Zimbabwe and her reclaiming of her childhood years in Africa is a gripping read." —Lisa Fugard, author of Skinner’s Drift: A Novel
“Kann writes brilliantly about sisters: their frictions, their intimacies, and, above all, their binding loyalty, even when time has moved them continents apart. Her memoir takes us on an emotional helter-skelter, from the entitlement and raw racism of her African childhood, through troughs of poverty and abandonment, to an ascendant understanding of what means to live and love. Reads like a sequel to Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight and Doris Lessing’s memoirs.” —Rob Nixon, Rachel Carson Professor of English at the University of Wisconsin and author of Dreambirds