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The Silver Tea Service

The Silver Tea Service


Judy Campbell


Nonfiction, Biography / Memoir, Family and Relationships, Political

Publish Date

September 9, 2019

Short Description

A memoir about a quest to solve a century old family mystery, and the unexpected outcomes yielded by the search.


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A rich memoir about exploring a family mystery, and how a search for truth can yield unexpected outcomes.

Eight years after the death of her mother, Judy reviews her family relics, including the antique tea service that belonged to her mother’s grandfather. Should she just sell the damn thing and buy new lounge furniture? It’s tempting.

But she stops to read the inscription etched into the solid silver tray. It honours this man around whom hangs a century-old mystery. Prickling with a strange resentment towards her widely loved mother, she embarks on a journey to uncover the truth behind the story of grandeur and ruin her mother had promised, but never wrote.

The author’s relentless research in dusty archives and neglected cemeteries across South Africa unravels an unexpected family history. The process draws her to revisit the darker corridors of her youth, and her sense of identity. She confronts the losses and complexities of her own life.

The Silver Tea Service is a thought-provoking memoir of loss, redemption and belonging, of political injustices and the inescapable nuances of history in South Africa.

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Judy Campbell

Judy Campbell


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