'Bursting with humour, intelligence and fierce humanity, Under the Camelthorn Tree takes you on a breathtaking journey: anthropological and personal. It is an unflinchingly brave, generous book filled with the wisdom of one who has seen both the beauty and the darkness the world has to give' - Sophie Dahl
Kate Nicholls left England to raise her five children in Botswana: an experience that would change each of their lives. Living on a shoestring in a lion conservation camp, Kate home-schools her family under a camelthorn tree while they also learn at first hand about the individual lives of wild lions. Their deep attachment to these magnificent animals is palpable.
This contemporary, gritty and humorous memoir explores the shocking impact of PTSD on a close-knit family, and their eventual recovery. It is a timely book that shines a light on an aspect of sexual crime that is often shrouded in shame: children of parents with PTSD can suffer collateral damage. The character-driven narrative moves effectively across time and place, revealing the gradual fragmentation of a strong woman. Kate Nicholls pulls no punches and her passion to act as advocate for the secondary victims of trauma is expressed in raw, unsentimental prose. She skilfully counterbalances this with amusing insight into family life. She explores the universal challenges of child-rearing with wit and engaging honesty, offering an unsanitised insight into raising a family in the African bush.
Kate Nicholls' tightly constructed narrative has received widespread praise and she made a much-acclaimed appearance at the Hay Festival with Jane Garvey in May 2019.
Publisher: Orion Publishing Co
£9.99 Regular Price