The Garden of Burning Sand by Corban Addison


Published by: Quercus
Published: May 2014
Format: ebook
Page count: 400

A copy was provided by the publisher in return for an honest review. 

Zoe Flemming is a highly regarded attorney who has made a life for herself in Zambia. She is sent to investigate a horrific crime. A young girl with Downs Syndrome is raped and left for death in the slums of Lusaka.

I had read A Walk Across the Sun a few years ago so I was really looking forward to getting into this.

Zoe joins forces with Joseph Kambuta to help solve this case. She ends up relying heavy on Joseph as the locals do not appreciate this white woman intruding on their lives and asking personal questions. It's clear from the beginning that very few people are going to trust her. 

A huge chunk of the books is dedicated to Zoe and Joseph tracking down any leads they find in order to solve the case. They begin to realize that this goes higher than any of them ever expected. They are stalked constantly and several threats are made on they're lives. They start to see that this case will not be straight forward as they piece together parts of the puzzle from Kuyeya's mother's Diary and witness accounts. Influential people are involved who just want this to "go away", no matter what.

I was horrified to learn that they had to fight hard to get DNA evidence admissible in court. At the time Zambian law saw collecting DNA for evidence as an intrusion on human rights! ......jesus. Also it was a huge issue to find funding and a lab to process the DNA. 

Here in Europe we take so much of this for granted. We watch crime shows where processing DNA is shown to be as simple as popping to the local shop for bread and milk. We really take these things for granted.

On the whole I really enjoyed Garden of Burning Sand but I felt the developing realtionship between Zoe a Joseph a little pointless. It didn't really add anything to the story for me. It was more than a distraction. 
Other than that it was a very satisfying read which I'd recommend to crime and courtroom drama fans 



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  1. Great review. I haven't read this author yet, but the I have read wonderful things about A Walk Across the Sun. This book sounds like something that I would like when I switch up genres. I am a moody binge reader and right now I am reading through my YA for review.
    -Flirting with Fiction

    1. I felt A Walk accross the Sun was slightly better so I would start with that one :)

  2. Awesome review please come share it in my community, we would love to have you :)

  3. Aw man, sorry to hear that the romance seemed more of a distraction instead of what it should be.

    1. It didn't take over the story really so its not a major deal. I was just more into the drama part than the romance part ;)

  4. A great review! I never heard of this author, but I am intrigued by it and will check out the other book first, A Walk Across the Sun--thanks!


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