A bold literary debut gives voice to a female section of Ghanaian society that is often seen but not heard
Michael Donkor has said that the inspiration for this debut novel came from the housemaids who cooked, cleaned and waited on him on childhood trips to his extended family in Ghana. These women were ubiquitous but always silent.
In Hold, he gives them a voice through Belinda, a 17-year-old domestic servant who is sent from a well-heeled Ghanaian household in Kumasi to look after Amma, a troubled teenager who lives with her Ghanaian-born parents in Clapham, south London. Belinda leaves behind a younger housemaid, Mary, a mischievous and lovable character whom she has come to see as a younger sister.