A barber, a chef and a portraitist are held hostage in a sparsely-furnished room, in a grand summer residence perched on a hill overlooking the capital city of a nameless hot country. They have been seized in a bloody coup to depose the President, their boss. In the city streets below them, chaos reigns. With the old order ruined, the moral landscape ravaged and venality widespread, human relationships - personal and political, between lovers and within families - are being dissected, fought over, abandoned. As the tension builds and the story reaches its devastating climax, "Blood Kin" lays bare humanity's most animalistic and mercenary impulses: lust, vanity, ambition, artifice, betrayal, obsession and vengeance. The locations are lavish, the detail is scrupulous, and the scope and themes are nothing short of Shakespearean. "Blood Kin" is a masterful, thrilling and deeply affecting debut.
Winner of Sunday Times Fiction Prize 2008.
Winner of University of Johnannesberg Prize for Creative Writing 2007.
Shortlisted for Commonwealth Writers' Prize Best First Book - Africa 2008.
Shortlisted for John Llewellyn Rhys Memorial Prize 2007.
Ceridwen Dovey is a writer, film maker and anthropologist. She was born and raised in South Africa, and attended high school in Australia and university in America at Harvard. She is currently completing her PhD at Harvard University. She is 23 years old.