• by Andre Brink
  • Narrated by Carla Mercer-Meyer
  • 12 hrs and 6 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

This is what it is to be a slave: that everything is decided for you from out there. You just got to listen and do as they tell you. You don't say no. You don't ask questions. You just do what they tell you. But far at the back of your head you think: Soon there must come a day when I can say for myself: This and that I shall do, this and that I shall not.
André Brink - "one of South Africa's greatest novelists" (the Telegraph) - gives us his most powerful novel yet; the truly unforgettable story of a female slave, and her fierce determination to survive and to be free. It is 1832 in South Africa, the year before slavery is abolished and the slaves are emancipated. Philida is the mother of four children by Francois Brink, the son of her master. When Francois's father orders him to marry a woman from a prominent Cape Town family, Francois reneges on his promise to give Philida her freedom, threatening instead to sell her to new owners in the harsh country up north.
Here is the remarkable story - based on individuals connected to the author's family - of a fiercely independent woman who will settle for nothing and for no one. Unwilling to accept the future that lies ahead of her, Philida continues to test the limits and lodges a complaint against the Brink family. Then she sets off on a journey-from the southernmost reaches of the Cape, across a great wilderness, to the far north of the country - in order to reclaim her soul.


What the Critics Say

"[Philida] traces the lacerating trajectory of the sins of parents, parents scars like open wounds on their children's bodies. There is an astonishing frankness about the facts of life and a visionary lyricism in relation to these cruel facts. The 'Acknowledgements' section details the genesis of the novel. In its way, it is as thrilling as the book itself. Extraordinary." (Kirkus Starred Review)


See More Like This

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Not worth your time

I've always looked forward to Andre Brink's novels, but Philida was pedantic and remarkably dull.
The voice of Philida - word usage and syntax was inconsistent. All the characters were flat and caricaturist.
Read full review

- abby

Hard to keep up.

I liked Philida. The problem I had with this book was when a new chapter started I had no idea who was talking. The author doesn't tell you ch 8 Philida, or ch 13 Franz. They talk and you have wait and figure out who's speaking.
Read full review

- Country Bookworm

Book Details

  • Release Date: 02-11-2013
  • Publisher: Tantor Audio