They only come out at night

A short story written in response to a call for stories that explore crime and mystery with some relevance to Zimbabwe and southern Africa. The story developed in response to several news articles on the plight faced by many albinos in Africa.

“It’s an unusual horror story. In most horror stories, you are flying over the narrative landscape and it’s a pleasant ride and often an unforgettable story. With “They Only Come Out at Night”, the plain slowly veers off course and by the time you land and disembark, you realize you are in a hostile territory; a territory hostile to what you believed is right about the world. The ones you once had sympathy for, you no longer have sympathy for and you start questioning the nature of evil. One other thing I liked about this story is the hyper-realism of the detail and malevolence.”
– Jonathan Brakarsh.
Writing Mystery and Mayhem

This eighth anthology of twelve short stories from Weaver Press reveals again the range and variety, compassion and humour, irony and tragedy with which Zimbabwean writers observe the world around them.

Several writers adopt a tongue-in-cheek approach to the subject: Naishe Nyamubaya takes us behind graphic newspaper headlines with a story of goblins, Jonathan Brakarsh turns the world inside out by constantly reversing our expectations, and Lawrence Hoba draws a situation both ‘collateral and incompatible’. It is a characteristic of crime fiction to defy expectation, as Farai Mudzingwa, Bongani Sibanda and Valerie Tagwira do in exploring the ramifications of sudden death. But if we are surprised by some stories, we can only be moved those which draw on the pain and vulnerablity of both the victims and those left behind. Godess Bvukutwa, Isabella Matambanadzo and Donna Kirstein help us to reflect on injustice and loss.

Reading this collection of stories, with subjects ranging from tokolosh to tsunami, and from ghosts to goldfish, reminds us that the world is crazier than we think.

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