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In the fictional country of Madia, a prostitute runs into the sea and drowns. The last man who spoke to her, the 'madman' Bukuru, is arrested and charged with murder. In court, Bukuru, representing himself, counters the charges with bombshell allegations. He speaks of government complicity in a series of atrocities, accusing the Madian ruler of rape and murder. His startling testimony is hushed up and Bukuru is sent back to prison, where his fate is grim. When a young journalist wangles a visit to his cell, they journey through turbulent decades of history that illuminate Bukuru's life and the nation's.

Brave and powerful, Arrows of Rain brilliantly dramatises complex factors behind the near-collapse of a nation. It is the lyrical, resonant and propulsive first novel by one of the most exciting contemporary novelists.