Characters appear in each other’s stories in a natural and well-crafted way, bringing a collection of short stories together into a complete novel. Coovadia shows the experience of living through South Africa’s historical events from the average person’s point of view as they deal with the worries of everyday life. He does so delicately and without forcing a point, carefully revealing the cracks in our history. He shows the randomness of life and how random acts can set in motion a pattern of events that can change history. Tales of the Metric System is insightful and expertly written, with good measures of suspense and emotion against a clever backdrop of South Africa’s history.