The Voyage Home by Jane Rogers
When Anne Harrington decides to return from her father's burial by boat, she is advised strongly against it. The journey from Nigeria back to England is too long, she is warned: far better to return to her old routine as quickly as possible. But Anne is not quite alone: she has her father's belongings, and more particularly, his diaries from his time in Africa.
Many years earlier, Anne's parents had made the opposite journey, arriving in Nigeria to run a mission in the east of the country. It was a time of new beginnings for her father, David, and her mother, Miriam, but also of great tensions: Miriam found local attitudes towards women restricting her role and her freedom; while David's theological differences with his staff were to have wider and more serious repercussions.
For Anne, meanwhile, the voyage home is not turning out to be the haven of solitude she is hoping for. Deep inside the ship, hidden among the containers, she discovers a pair of stowaways, desperate not to be discovered. And though Anne promises not to reveal their existence to the crew, if she does not find help, one of them may die ...