Faber & Faber - She Left Me the Gun by Emma Brockes (Extract 2 of 2)
She Left Me the Gun by Emma Brockes (Extract 2 of 2)
The gun in the title of Emma Brockes' extraordinary memoir belonged to her mother Paula, who left South Africa as a young woman in the 1960s to build a new life for herself in England, away from the trauma of her earlier years. 'One day I will tell you the story of my life', she promised her ten-year-old daughter, 'and you will be amazed'. She didn't reveal details during her lifetime, but something piqued her journalist daughter's curiosity. Tracking down relatives on a different continent, some more reticent than others, Emma Brockes unravels an astonishing story of murder, molestation and abuse. Yet the book is far from misery memoir, packed as it is with quirky stories and tales of amazing resilience.
This is the second of two extracts from the book read by the author.