Sometimes heart-breaking, often funny, Summertime completes J.M.Coetzee’s majestic trilogy of fictionalised memoir, begun with Boyhood and Youth.
.M. Coetzee’s (entirely fictional) English biographer gradually reveals an unflattering portrait of the young Coetzee as an awkward, bookish individual with little talent for opening himself to others. Within the family he’s regarded as an outsider, someone who tried to flee the tribe and has now returned, chastened. His insistence on doing manual work, his long hair and beard and (most damning) the rumours that he writes poetry - all evoke nothing but suspicion in the South Africa of the time.