"Secrets are like scars over a wound that never quite disappears."

All her life Chala has been haunted by a childhood tragedy. When her much-loved stepfather dies suddenly, she escapes to Kenya, to revisit the lake she was named after and a country imbued for her with happy memories.

Kenya has its own troubles, and soon she is caught up in the lives of the orphans she works with and in Kenya’s political turmoil, which brings dangers and tragedies of its own. But although she can walk away from Kenya, she cannot walk away from herself.

Yellow Room is a powerful and absorbing story that explores the power of secrets to run our lives.

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Inner turmoil, unreliable memories, lies and secrets: Shelan Rodger writes about relationships and identity with a truthfulness we find hard to face up to - and she’s very good at it.
— Aidan Hartley, Best-selling author of The Zanzibar Chest
Yellow Room is an engaging, compassionate masterpiece of literary fiction. The language is elegant, sensuous and evocative; the characterisations complex and believable. This novel cements the author’s place as a writer of substance.
— Jackie Law, Neverimitate blog
A moving, poignant story that fully comes alive in the trauma of post election violence of Kenya, but where the real power and tension can be found is in the truths, half truths and lies that shape its central characters.
— Mark Goldring, Chief Executive of Oxfam
Compelling, evocative, sharply observed and exquisitely written.
— Amanda Jennings, Best-selling author of In Her Wake
Shelan Rodger’s writing has a haunting quality, her words flow effortlessly, her story is formed perfectly. Her characterisations are true to life, they are flawed, at times they are quite horrible, and it is this that makes them human, and real. The real beauty of her writing is her ability to connect with the reader so well. Yellow Room is gloriously detailed, beautifully written and extremely memorable.
— Anne Cater, Random Things Through my Letterbox blog

Back Story

I have a strong connection with Kenya, where part of Yellow Room is set. My father is buried there, my mother still lives there and my husband and I spent six years there. We were living in Naivasha, one of the worst hit areas of the country during the post-election violence of 2007, which claimed over a thousand lives and displaced more than half a million people.

The term ‘skeleton in the closet’ was first used in the early 1800s – what a wonderful image that still is! Our own secrets can shape us and drive us, and the secrets of others can be intimately connected with our lives in ways that we may never know.

In Yellow Room, against the backdrop of Kenya, I wanted to explore the way our inner world interacts with and can be affected by another culture and external events around us. Above all, I wanted to explore the power of secrets and the shifting sands of our sense of self…

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