A farmhouse is being reproduced a dozen times, with slight
variations, throughout a valley. Three small graves have been dug
in the front garden, the middle one lying empty. A woman in a
wheelchair sorts through boxes while her husband clambers around
the old demolished buildings, wondering where the animals have
gone. A young woman – called ‘the barren one’ behind her back –
dreams of love, while an ageing headmaster contemplates the end of
his life. At the entrance to the long dirt driveway, a car appears
and pauses – pointed towards the house like a silver bullet,
ticking with heat.
So begins The Dream House, Craig Higginson’s
riveting and unforgettable novel set in the Midlands of
KwaZulu-Natal. Written with dark wit, a stark poetic style and
extraordinary tenderness, this is a story about the state of a
nation and a deep meditation on memory, ageing, meaning, family,
love and loss.
This updated 2016 edition contains new content, with
Craig Higginson exploring the background to The Dream House, his
varied experiences in a farmhouse in KwaZulu-Natal and the
subsequent and poignant motivations for this moving novel.
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