'Colin Thubron's voice is unique: once heard, difficult to forget' Anita Brookner
Far away from the city of his birth, in a frontier town on the edge of tribal wilderness, a doctor tries to resolve the seemingly unreconcilable demands of his public career and his personal feelings. He believes his exile her to be temporary, and youthful memories of the distant city torment him with an unbearable sense of loss. Yet he has grown to love a fellow exile, a woman of fierce independence and strong will, who belongs by nature to the warmth and chaos of the frontier? But, during a summer of drought and disease the desert erupts into savagery and he is at last confronted by thc choice of returning to the city or of remaining with her.
“This transcendentally gifted writer is of course one of the two or three best living travel writers - in some ways probably the best”