Petals of Blood (BOK)
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After a terrible murder in the village of Ilmorog, four suspects are placed in detention: Munira the headmaster; Abdullah the storekeeper; Karega the assistant teacher and 'barmaid' Wanja. The lives of these four characters are inextricably linked with the lives of the three murder victims, the fortunes of Ilmorog and with the fate of Kenya itself. Published to great controversy in 1977, "Petals of Blood" is as much a whodunnit as a political novel and satire. Ngugi unfolds a human landscape that is both beautiful and horrifying, as tribalism and village life are manipulated in the name of progress by the cynical bureaucrats who came to power as heroes of liberation.