|Plot Summary of Age of Iron|
|"South Africa's apartheid shocks a retired professor, Mrs. Curren, when her maid's black son is murdered by police security forces. Mrs. Curren herself is dying slowly of cancer and she writes letters to her long-gone daughter in a day by day journal form (this book): after a life dedicated to books and culture, the recent murder she's witnessed has also opened her eyes to the horrors of apartheid, which in return is raising a counter attack of the black youth; they might be the begining of an 'age of iron' after the age of clay and stone that their slave parents were.
Mrs. Curren's depression turns into dead calm when she finds a beggar at her door, a man named Vercueil. He only wants food and drinks, but soon after he finds himself becoming fond of this old lady, finally promising to make sure that these letters to her daughter in America will be delivered after she's passed away."
Augusto Wong Campos, Resident Scholar
|" An old lady is told that she has cancer, it has affected her bones. She has got a daughter who is now living in the United States, far from South Africa, where she was born and where her mother is living now. The story is developed when Apartheid regime is taking place. The very same day the old woman gets to know about her illness and has a feeling of deep loneliness, she meets a black man, homeless, who has found a place to sleep in her property.
A close relationship starts between them. They are no friends, no lovers but they spend together those difficult personal and historical times. Through his fine and delicate narrative, Coetzee deals with the violence that takes place in South Africa during these times and with its impact on human beings. "
Marta Garay, Resident Scholar
|Review Analysis of Age of Iron|
Our unique search engine provides a wealth of detail about books by breaking them down into many different literary elements, all of which are searchable (click here).
Ratings are on a 1-10 scale (Low to High)
Tone of book?
Time/era of story
- minorities fighting for rights
Is this an adult or child's book?
- Adult or Young Adult Book
Outside culture (society)
- African Black
Wisdom from homeless/bum?
- long lived adults
- emotionally unstable
Is this an ordinary person caught up in events?
- White (American)
How sensitive is this character?
- sensitive to others' feelings
Sense of humor
- Strong but gentle sense of humor
- Mostly serious with occasional humor
- Smarter than most other characters
- physically sick
How much of work is main antagonist actually present in:
- a substantial amount
How sensitive is this character?
- mean, arrogant
How much descriptions of surroundings?
- 5 ()
Kind of Africa:
- Black Africa
- White Enclave
- mostly 1st
Accounts of torture and death?
- explicit references to deaths
- very explicit references to deaths and torture
Sex in book?
What kind of sex:
- vague references
- a lot of flashback and forwards
- a lot of stream of consciousness
- written like a journal/diary/letters
Amount of dialog
- significantly more descript than dialog
Click here for more information about this book
Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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