Charlotte, an attractive twenty something woman, is confronted by a secret upon her mother’s death. In unraveling what is and what is not, the mystery surrounding her own origin, her doubts are resolved in the clarity of a father’s love.
Gordimer’s style is succinct and incisive, frequently interrogative in this piece, probing inwards for answers. She underplays Charlotte’s emotional turmoil, but the angst is not undermined.
It is an irony that I should begin reading Nadine Gordimer’s works with the last published story. Nonetheless, it is a satisfying one, successful in having me want to read more of her earlier works. Titled “A Beneficiary”, this one came out in a May 2007 New Yorker issue. It is also available online: