Catalogue - New Works (Ficton & non-ficton)

Of Land and Spirit
by Alan Thrush

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Transition Publishing, 1997
240 x 160mm, 408 pages
ISBN 0 620 20913 5

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Zimbabwe-Rhodesia - March 1980. In the pre-dawn gloom, Rhodesian Army units are poised to re-group and attack the assembled forces of Zanla and Zipra. results of the British-supervised elections are seeping through: an overwhelming vote for Robert Mugabe.

In camps across the country, twenty thousand guerrillas stand to their weapons, waiting for the frantan to come crashing and burning through the trees into hut, trench and bunker. Waiting for the soldiers, pouring down from the sky.

This is the story of the five years leading to the birth of Zimbabwe - the story of Andrew Scott, George Sibanda, Kuretu, Mpehla, Hlomani and many others of the Rhodesian forces as they fight with great skill a war they cannot win. For even as the kills mount, so the numbers of the enemy inside the country grow even larger.

It is also the story of Jason Mavunha and his comrades of the Zimbabwe African National Liberation Army. Jason joins the Chimurenga - the War of Liberation - after guerrillas have been surprised at his village .... leading to the deaths of his two brothers.

This is the story of a white community wanting to retain its way of life, without realising the effect this is having on their sons who must carry on the fight. Of a black community whose sons serve on both sides, and which suffers reprisal and atrocity.

Nowhere has the sheer weariness of war been better portrayed, with its numbing excitment. There is bravery, cowardice, comradeship and above all, the loss that comes from a civil war.

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