My name is Benny Griessel and I am an alcoholic.
"Hello, Benny," said thirty-two voices in a happy chorus.
"Last night I drank a whole bottle of Jack Daniels and I hit my wife. This morning she kicked me out of the house. I have gone one day without drinking. I am here because I can't control my drinking. I am here because I want my wife and children and my life back."
But getting his life back won't be easy for Detective Inspector Benny Griessel of Cape Town's Serious and Violent Crimes Unit, because there is a vigilante killer on the loose - a ruthless executioner with a personal vendetta against the scum committing crimes against children.
With the media screaming, politicians turning up the heat, his young, inexperienced colleagues bumbling, and the body count rising, Griessel has to resort to the desperate measure of setting a trap.
But his brilliant plan does not quite take into account the love of a sex worker for her child, the ruthlessness of the deadly Sangrenegra drug cartel or his own passion for the healing powers of the bottle.
"This moving, expertly constructed story of a broken man’s redemption is bound to win awards."
— John Dugdale, The Sunday Times, London.
"Meyer unfolds the story in parallel narratives and keeps the plot taut to the point of snapping. Thobela works his way mercilessly through child rapists and abusers, while Benny gets on to the trail of the killer whom the press has dubbed 'Artemis'. And Christine thinks up a way of getting rid of her obsessive Colombian, in the process tossing a chunky spanner into the already delicate works. I marvelled at the intricacy of the plotting, I smiled at Christine's cheeky ingenuity, I felt Thobela's pain and Benny's desperation, and I was stunned by a dénouement of awesome power and accomplishment."
— Matthew Lewin The Guardian.
"Starred Review. Complex, finely wrought characters, keen psychological insight and a compelling plot lift this crime novel from South African author Meyer.
— Publishers Weekly.
"Meyer piles on the complications, doling out exposition via an intermittent confession van Rooyen makes to an exceptionally patient priest, before ending with a show-stopping tableau bringing the cop and the vigilante together."
— Kirkus Reviews.
The World of Devil's Peak
Mean Mountain: According to most Cape Town residents, Devil’s Peak got its name from the popular legend of the Dutch pirate Van Hunks and his smoking duel with the Devil. That’s partly true – but what you probably don’t know is that the legend is a recent invention. You see, the Ballad of Jan Van Hunks was only published in 1909, but the residents of Cape Town have been accusing the Devil’s Peak of escorting the Cape Southeaster for a lot longer.
Thobela's Farm: The Cata River in the Eastern Cape. Thobela's farm borders on this river.
Cape Infanta: The Breede River mouth, taken from the Witsand side. Across the river is the small town of Infanta, where the final scenes in the novel takes place.