Author: Chris Marnewick Signed by the Author Publisher: Random House Struik (2012) ISBN-10: 1415200440 ISBN-13: 9781415200445 Condition: Very Good Binding: Softcover Pages: 415 Dimensions: 23.2 x 15.3 x 3.2 cm
Weight: 0.7 kg
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Leon Labuschagne’s livelihood depends on death. At nineteen, he is a Death Row warder at Maximum Security Prison in Pretoria, South Africa: a shepherd who cares for the condemned – and a butcher who escorts them to the gallows. In the summer of 1987, after thirty-two men were hanged in two weeks (all real cases), Leon loses control, with tragic results. And now he’s the one facing the death penalty.
Only the most precarious line of legal argument stands between Leon and the gallows. Chasing a defense, his advocate trawls the deepest recesses of life in the Pot – the twilight world of Death Row – in order to determine the effect of multiple executions on his young client. In 1987, 164 people were executed at Maximum Security. Two years later, the last man went to the gallows, after more than four thousand hangings in Pretoria in that century.
Shepherds & Butchers portrays legal execution in unprecedented detail, revealing its devastating impact on all those involved. At the same time, it exposes the callous violence on the other side of the noose, where murderers reign. Chris Marnewick’s first novel is a gripping courtroom drama steeped in the factual.