For years, it has been what is called a "deteriorating situation." Now it is war. All over South Africa, cities are battlegrounds, and radio and television stations are under siege. Bam and Maureen Smales take up their servant July's suggestion and drive with their children to his remote home village. For fifteen years, July has been the decently treated black servant, totally dependent on them. Now, he becomes their host, their savior, and their keeper. Suddenly facing a hunted life of bare subsistence, owing their survival to July, the Smales are forced to look at him and at one another in an entirely new light. They find life utterly changed and harboring different dread and hope for each individual.