Ingeborg is a middle-aged, unadventurous librarian who lives in small town in Norway. Her husband is dead, and her son has moved out and lost touch with his mother. On a trip to Cuba, she allows herself to be charmed by a black man, a musician who sings and plays the drums in the hotel garden. He is black and poor, but a clever man. She is white and well off, but alone. Norway's satiated consumer society is contrasted with the bankrupt Cuba in this politically aware, searching novel about the fragile balance between people – and about a woman's relationships with her son and with her lover. Vigdis Hjorth writes about being a woman now. She examines the roles of women with a critical eye, from every perspective and without flinching from dangerous and unpleasant issues. She is knowledgeable, has a probing intellect – and a sense of humour!
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