Nyree and Cia live on a remote farm in the east of what was Rhodesia in the late 1970s. Beneath the dripping vines of the Vumba rainforest, and under the tutelage of their heretical grandfather, theirs is a seductive childhood laced with African paganism, mangled Catholicism and the lore of the Brothers Grimm. Their world extends as far as the big fence, erected to keep out the 'Terrs' whom their father is off fighting. The two girls know little beyond that until the arrival from the outside world of 'the bastard', their orphaned cousin Ronin, who is to poison their idyll for ever.
Lauren Liebenberg was born in what was Rhodesia and spent her early childhood in the crucible of the civil war. She now lives in South Africa and has an MBA from the business school of the University of Witwatersrand. She is married to an Englishman and has two young children.