The Atlas of Forgotten Places: A Novel
When Sabine’s niece, Lily, goes missing after a stint as an aid worker in Uganda, Lily’s stepfather begs Sabine for help. Sabine spent almost two decades in Africa, and she knows she must fly to Uganda if she has any chance of helping Lily. Official channels prove to be of little help, but Sabine finds the support she needs in Christoph, a Swiss academic, and his assistant, Rose, a local woman who is frantic to find her boyfriend, Ocen. As Sabine and Rose uncover the extent of Lily and Ocen’s involvement, they realize their loved ones are in more danger than they could ever have imagined. Moving deep into lawless territory in Congo, where the brutal Lord’s Resistance Army is a constant threat, Rose must face the worst horrors from her past in order to save the ones she loves most.
This stunning novel is, first and foremost, a true page-turner–expertly plotted, with riveting storylines for both Rose and Sabine. Williams knows well the world of her story, and reading Atlas is an immersion in both Uganda and the morally fraught culture of aid work. Williams is compassionate but relentless in how she shapes her characters’ fates, and even those who escape with their lives will be scarred forever.
Thomas Dunne Books
Jenny D. Williams