A “beautifully told story of love and growth” set in post-WWII South Africa (Booklist).
When disfigured soldier George Harding returns from the front, he moves a poor family into the servant’s quarters of his family’s South African estate, saving them from financial ruin—and initiating a series of events that will change all of their fates forever.
Among the new tenants at Harding’s Rest is Cressida, a young girl haunted by phantoms of World War II and the Holocaust, and terrified by Harding’s gnarled body. Invited to the main house to help bring Harding’s hopelessly timid nephew out of his shell, Cressida makes an impression on her family’s benefactor.
As she blossoms into womanhood, Cressida slowly becomes beguiled by what once repulsed her, in this strange and beautiful decades-spanning novel that “blends Dickensian musings on class with a Brontë-like love story” (San Francisco Chronicle).
“Cressida, a young girl who watches those around her patch up their wounds from the war and carry on with the weight of pretense, is as observant and as wickedly truthful as any Jane Austen character.” —Amy Tan