A Finalist for the National Jewish Book Award—Fiction
For fans of The Kite Runner and A Brief History of Seven Killings, a page-turning literary and political thriller set in apartheid Johannesburg
As the 1980s draw to a close, South Africa is a maelstrom of political violence, the apartheid regime in its death throes. Young Martin Helger is a misfit at an elite private boys’ school in Johannesburg, with a father who is a scrap dealer and a brother who is a mysterious legend.
When a beautiful and manipulative American activist arrives at the family home, Martin soon finds himself wrenched out of his isolated bubble and thrust into the heart of the struggle. At the same time, secrets from the past begin to emerge, tearing at the Helgers, a second-generation Jewish family, even as the larger forces of history and politics tear apart the country.
The Mandela Plot is at once a high-stakes literary thriller and a moving coming-of-age tale that charts the journey of a young man trying to find his place in a country that has lost its way.