A Series of Undesirable Events by Deon Simphiwe Skade (NLSA, 2011)
Set in Cape Town, A Series of Undesirable Events weaves together six
stories of close friends, who each deals with an unfortunate event. The
author presents what may have been one story in fragments that each
tackles social challenges such as infidelity, violence, HIV/AIDS and
sexuality. There’s also a strong focus on the complexities of dreams and
aspirations; on just how insincere some dreams and aspirations tend to
be. Moshe, the protagonist in at least three stories, gives us glimpses
of the disadvantages experienced by an individual who does not
intimately know his dreams. The result of such negligence ultimately
breeds an internal conflict that only Moshe can address.
Like facial make-up that gets applied and removed later, this book
reflects application of “make-up” on many levels of the society
including attitudes. But the truth always comes out in the end.