This, the second volume for short stories by the late Marion Baxter, strengthens her reputation as an accomplished writer. Perhaps her most outstanding talent is the way she takes on the persona of the characters in her stories – as a teenage boy of mixed race, as a gung-ho press photographer, an adventurous widow, a stolid university professor, a grieving father turned hippie, a plagiarist poet, an earnest young Austrian musicologist, a wannabe suicide-committer, a student drug mule, a car thief – we can only admire her versatility.
Before Marion Baxter died in 2002 she had lived in Grahamstown for eighteen years during which time she obtained a master’s degree in English from the university and worked in turn for four of the city’s institutes — the International Library of African Music, the L B Smith Institute of Ichthyology, the Institute for the Study of English in Africa and the Shakespeare Society of Southern Africa, preparing the works of others for publication. Her own works — short stories and poems — published mainly in journals and magazines, won a number of literary prizes.
Born in England in 1945 and moving from place to place in Africa from the age of eight, she may not, as one of her poems suggests, have felt herself to be from Grahamstown, but her writings show that she was certainly of it and, in a wider sense, of the Eastern Cape.
(Jeanette Eve, A Literary Guide to the Eastern Cape: Places and the Voices of Writers, Double Storey 2003)