As the old political order started to fall away in South Africa, the changes in the country affected everyone. Many of the unfranchised majority, especially young people, who were going to feel themselves free for the first time, were seized by a great urgency. Was it possible, they wondered, that the hope of freedom could be snatched away just as they thought it was theirs? On the other hand, some of the beneficiaries of the old order feared that everything they had worked for might be snatched away in the approaching revolution.

Deluge - flooding of the Orange River in 1988
The front cover of the Gemsbok on 18 March 1988, an Upington newspaper. It is an Afrikaans paper and for those of you who do not know Afrikaans the headline reads “Second flood in three weeks” and “Flood is here again”.  The photograph on the left is of children on the way to school by row boat.

These fears, from opposing directions, were bound to clash and they did, many times. One of the most notable clashes occurred in the Northern Cape town of Upington. A township killing resulted in the real possibility of an entire crowd being charged for the murder of just one person. The town and its people faced a deluge of emotions brought on by the political and legal situation.

Running past the northern edge of the town is the Orange River. It is a typically African river that, not unlike the Nile, flows a thousand kilometres across a desert to reach the sea. It is prone to flooding. During flood times it has caused chaos in the town of Douglas, closer to the mountains, but has usually flattened out by the time it reaches Upington. Not always though. It sometimes arrives at the town with unusual ferocity.  This was the case in 1988.

My novel, DELUGE, is not based on these two deluges, one political and the other natural. It is inspired by them though. The background is real. The story is thrilling.

DELUGE will be released at the end of this month.

If you would like a synopsis of the book, you will find it here and more on Yudel Gordon, the prison psychologist hero, here.

The Events that Inspired DELUGE
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