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The Pickup
Nadine Gordimer
publisher: Querido, Amsterdam, 2001



refered to by:
Nineteen Eighty-Four
George Orwell

The Unbearable Lightness of Being
Milan Kundera


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Who picked up whom? Is the pickup the illegal immigrant desperate to evade deportation to his impoverished desert country? Or is the pickup the powerful businessman's daughter trying to escape a privileged background she despises? When Julie Summers' car breaks down in the sleazy street where she meets her Retro-Sixties friends, a young Arab garage mechanic emerges from beneath the chassis of a vehicle to aid her. Out of this meeting develops an extraordinary story of unpredictable and relentless emotions that turn on its head each one's notions of the other. No action by either is what the other expects. She insists, against his know-how of the rules of survival, on leaving the country with him when he is deported. The love affair becomes a marriage - that state she regards as a social convention appropriate to her father's set - but decreed by her 'grease-monkey' (as her friends privately dub him) in order to present her respectably to his family.
In the Arab village, while he is dedicated to escaping, again to what he believes is a fulfilling life in Western-style countries, she is drawn by a counter-magnet of new affinities in his close family and the omnipresence of the desert.

bookweb    
BOOKS BY NADINE GORDIMER:

The Conservationist
1974
Mehring, a wealthy, dominating South African industrialist moves to preserve his way of life, his power, and his possessions in the face of massive injustice and suffering, changing times, and death.
The House Gun
1997
The orderly life of a white, middle-aged, South-African couple changes for good when their son kills one of his housemates.
The Pickup
2001
When Julie Summers' car breaks down in a sleazy street, a young Arab mechanic comes to her rescue. Out of this meeting develops a friendship that turns to love. Soon Abdu is deported from South Africa and Julie insists on going too - but the couple must marry to make the relationship legitimate.
The Lying Days
1953

Occasion for Loving
1963
The love affair between a black man and a white woman in a time when lovers could be imprisoned for breaking the law against sexual relations across the color bar.
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