Gill Lewis has won awards with her previous novels about endangered animals and environments and their conservation. Here, she turns to the exploitation of both the land and of animals in developing countries such as Congo.
She tells the story of Imara, taken as a small child from her village when rebels raid it, and brainwashed into thinking that she has magical powers. A parallel theme relates Bobo's experience, determined to discover the truth when his father, a National Park ranger, vanishes during a rebel raid to collect young gorillas for sale.
Lewis writes empathetically about the gorilla colony and the lives of the villagers: both prey to avaricious, corrupt and ruthless forces from their own and the developed world.