Chris, Ikem and Beatrice are three like-minded friends working under the military regime of His Excellency, the Sandhurst-educated President of Kangan. In the pressurised atmosphere of oppression and intimidation they are simply trying to live and love - and remain friends. But in a world where each day brings a new betrayal, hope is hard to cling on to.
Achebe's candid vision of contemporary African politics is a powerful fusion of angry voices and flashes of poetry. But his interpretation of oil-boom Nigeria is not defeatist; like his character Beatrice, Achebe refuses to disparage the day that still has an hour of light in its hand.