In this assured debut about loneliness and passion in Africa, Sue Eckstein enthrals with a deliciously intricate plot, compelling characters and razor-sharp dialogue.West Africa in the early 1990s. Isabel Redmond is tiring of her iconoclastic husband's penchant for pendulous black breasts; the High Commissioner and his wife Fenella are both enjoying illicit affairs; an old English judge is wandering through the scrub following a tribe of Fulani herdsmen; Bob Newpin is about to make a killing in timeshares; and just what Father Seamus is up to is anyone's guess.Enter new diplomat Daniel Maddison on his first posting abroad. Rebelling against the endless rounds of cocktail parties, golf and gossip, he finds himself drawn to people and places that lie way beyond the experience of his High Commission colleagues -- and specifically to the dusty warehouse in the heart of the city where a thin white woman is silently measuring out lengths of brightly coloured cloth.

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