• Title – Way Back Home
  • Autor – Nicholas Niq Mhlongo
  • Genre – Fiction 
  • Publisher – Kwela Books ISBN 13: 9780795707452

I was in high school when I read Way Back Home, but I still remember the chapters vividly.

The dramatic novel is interesting from exile to South Africa.

As the story of what happened in Angola unfolds in South Africa in a number of events that leave the reader wanting more.

It is rare to hear of the traumas women endured in exile during the Struggle.

What we hear of are rumours and murmurs because Struggle veterans only share the revolutionary accounts of exile. Only a few will tell the good and the bad. However, in the novel Niq narrates both the good and the bad. The reader gets a glimpse into Senami’s experiences at the mercy of her comrades, as well as her quest for justice.’

There are also the return cadres who become affluent tenderpreneurs. These comrades by-pass tender regulations because they feel they paid their dues with the time served in exile. Kimathi is one of these cadres who live lavish lifestyles and lives in the wealthiest suburbs of Johannesburg. Fine whiskey and exclusive private education for young people are the order of the day in Kimathi’s life.

As cadres who went to exile returned, some didn’t. Some waited until they went to the grave. While others have unanswered questions of what happend to their children who left home full of life and the vigor to fight for liberation. Senami’s parents ask themselves where she is to enjoy the liberation she left home to fight for.

Kimathi’s demons haunt him until he has to go back to Angola where he has to confront them. Angola was the beginning of all his troubles and that’s where his suffering ends.

If you enjoyed this read, you’re most likely to enjoy Thirteen Cents by Sello K Duikers.


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