Coffee With Children’s Book Author, Kariema Taliep Davids 

A week ago, Kariema Taliep Davids, a children’s book author and entrepreneur invited me for coffee at her house in Wetton, Cape Town. We spoke about her journey to becoming a self-published author, her love for reading, and how her first grandchild, Haniyah, led to her publishing a children’s book.

After two hours of chit-chat, we finally settled down over coffee and freshly made donuts baked by her daughter-in-law.

Moenie dink nie, doen net

“Moenie dink nie, doen net’ is an Afrikaans phrase Kariema heard while watching a TV program, ‘BALLADE VIR N ENKELING.’ One of the main characters who was a writer said ’Moenie dink nie, doen net!’

“This phrase stuck in my mind forever. And it works for me. Like if one writes down a To-do list, you get only a few things done on that list. But when you want to do something, just do it.That works wonders for me.’’

Meet Author and Entrepreneur, Kariema Taliep Davids

Children's Book Author
Kariema Talipe Davids

Kariema is a 55-year-old mother of two boys and two grandchildren. Her love for reading and writing started more than 30 years ago. As a child, she belonged to the Jellybean Journal (a Weekend Argus initiative) and the Junior Argus. She would send in her drawings and poems on a weekly basis.

During the COVID Lockdown 3, Kariema spent much time with her grandchild Haniyah. She noticed Haniyah’s fascination for books and animals. It was then that Kariema realized that this was what she wanted to do all along to write her first children’s book.

Haniya and the Pink Rabbit: Book 1

Haniyah and the Pink Rabbit

In November 2020, Kariema wrote Haniyah and the Pink Rabbit and did all the illustrations herself. She needed the book to be an original hand-drawn book and not digital images and computer graphics. This would be her greatest achievement.

The Blurb

Haniyah and the Pink Rabbit is inspired by grandchild Haniyah who loves her “pink rabbit’’ toy that she takes with her everywhere. It is a delightful tale full of Love and Compassion with adorable illustrations of Haniyah and her special friend. It is a warm story that children will adore keeping little readers entertained and helping them to learn about Caring and Sharing.

“By March 2021, I self-published my first book ‘Haniyah AND THE PINK RABBIT’. In May 2021 I started to write my second book, ‘Haniyah GOES TO SCHOOL’. I finished in August 2021 and self-published in November 2021.’’

Haniya Goes To School Book 2

Haniyah goes to School

The Blurb

Haniya Goes to School is a book about a little boy who is different and who stretches himself to succeed and earn self-esteem. He was bullied and taunted. He accepted his imperfections and his Courage to face fear and move forward, has turned him into a brave little heart, who everyone looks up to. The story is Comforting and Inspiring.

Her theme for the books is life lessons for kids. Her plan is to get the books into the school’s curriculum.

As we are chatting, her phone keeps beeping. The design company needed to confirm the layout of her released book, Haniyah Discovers Identity, book 3 of the Haniyah book series. The launch was on November 5, November 2022.

Haniyah Discovers Identity: Book 3

Haniyah discovers diversity

The Blurb

We celebrate the story that opens the hearts and minds of children from all walks of life. It is the story that encourages enthusiasm for learning and respect for the World’s Diversity. Representing ‘Universal Love’ and it seeks to educate children to be the leaders of tomorrow

Treating Her Books As A Business Investment

As a self-published author, Kariema explained how exhausting and costly publishing your own book can be. Her first book was published in 2021. It was at the time our country’s national Coronavirus Command Council had decided to enforce a nationwide lockdown. The accumulated costs of publishing, marketing, and distribution skyrocketed.

“Financing your book is a lot of money. There’s a lot of money involved, the graphic designer, the printer, the editors, and the proof-readers. The whole printing of the book is expensive. And then there is printing of flyers, people to do social media for you, and the fuel of driving up and down.’’

However, it is not all gloom for the indie publisher. Kariema adds with self-publishing you should be able to wear many hats. Going solo means having 100% creative control over the book publishing process and being involved in many aspects of the publishing process.

And when it comes to book marketing, Kariema is her own brand ambassador. She put up her own website and created social media accounts for her customers to have easy access to her. On different days Kariema visits schools and libraries for book readings.

Newspaper clip from Kariema Davids Book Launch

Most of her sales are generated through her own efforts. Her customers buy books directly from her. And has managed to list the books at Takealot and Amazon including Clarke’s bookstore in Cape Town.

What’s next for Kariema Taliep Davids

“My family has an author in the family now. I need to go for an overseas holiday to celebrate as I am climbing the ladder of success. I am not there yet, however the feeling is great.’’

Her list for next year includes writing two more books. She will be doing a follow-up storybook on her grandson later this year. Adding to this Kariema says she has already started working on her next Book 2 of the Trilogy, “A Passionate Love’ – The Masqued Love series. Her first adult fiction called, A Passionate Love is a racy romance novel for adults only.

The Blurb

A Passionate Love is a story set in London and Paris. It is based on an English girl, Catherine Darcy Evans, and a French man, Jacques Dupont. They fall madly in love. Catherine is a widow who lost her husband and is unaware her new love was involved in her husband’s death.

A Passionate Love

Kariema Taliep Davids is inspirational. An hour date turned into three hours of laughter, real talk, and great coffee.

Last Words From Kariema Taliep Davids

‘’Don’t be discouraged by people, follow your heart, follow your dream. If your manuscripts are lying around for many years,send it for submission. Moenie dink nie, doen net!’’

For more information about Kariema Taliep Davids and should you want to purchase her books, visit her website https://ktdbooks.co.za
You can buy her books Online: Takealot and Amazon
Children’s books: R150 per book
Novel R300
Contact her on 063 864 1701

Related topic: Meet The Author: 10-Year-Old Award-Winning Author – Stacey Fru

Before You Go

If you liked this post, send a shout-out to Kariema by commenting below.

Thanks for stopping by.

Chat soon,
Angy

xx

Book Review Weeping Waters | Karyn Brynard – Not Everyone is Your Friend

Weeping Waters by Karin Brynard is a crime fiction novel that is set in a small community by the Karoo, Northern Cape. The community setting is particularly important here, as this novel explores how people can be affected by what happens in their surrounding environment.

We’re introduced to a police detective Inspector Albertus Beeslaar. He swapped his high-paced job in Johannesburg to settle in a town where the only crimes are in stock farming. On his arrival, the gruesome murder of Freddie Swarts and her daughter welcomes him. Freddie’s throat was slit and her adopted daughter lay in a pool of blood.
Besides the murders, the inspector has to deal with his young unimpressionable detectives. Both detectives are not schooled on how to treat a crime scene. This of course annoys the hell out of the inspector. He already has a triggered temper which makes him out to be a racist when he scolds his two sergeants.

Inspector to the Superintendent, “There was no racism…My impatience with his (Sergeant Gershwin Pyl) shoddy work isn’t racism!”

All the while reading this story I could not place who the killer was. My first suspect was the mysterious farm manager, Dam de Kok. Dam and Freddie seem to have had some kind of relationship. We read later that Freddie left the farm to Dam, in case something happened to her. And his alibi was always cagey.

On his whereabouts that fateful Wednesday, Dam claims he was at the bank. Yet, he cannot explain where and what he was doing during that hour while waiting for the bank to reopen.

Could he have driven back to the farm, murder his boss, change his clothes, and go back to the bank?

Then there were more murders. Among the murders, an old monkey is found with a throat slit off with a piece of wire across its forehead. That would only mean, Dam would not be suspect any longer. He loved animals and birds, a falconer he said. In any case, why would he slit a monkey’s throat and place it in front of his house?

Later, a character is introduced. This character is a wanted suspect in Joburg. He drives a BMW and is identified as leaving a murder scene.

Why would he murder Freddie?

Freddie was a genuinely nice person. She had hopes of adopting a child with alcohol syndrome. Again, she wanted to help the community of the Griquas in getting their land back. The writer then narrates a bit of the history of the Griquas through the local museum’s curator.

Who would benefit from killing Freddie?

Her need to be the ‘Messiah’ annoyed the local farmers. Had her petition to find the land’s rightful owners, the farmers would have to leave or sell their farms. Her death meant that no one would interfere and would threaten their livelihood.

Then there was her ”best friend”, Nelmarie. She promises to make Freddie one of the renowned artists, she believes in Freddie’s talents. Throughout the story, there is no hint that she could want to kill Freddie and why would she?

By the end of the book, the author reveals who murdered poor Freddie and why. It was a twist of events for me on realising who did it

 

 

Weeping Waters by Karin Brynard

Weeping Waters is a translation of the Afrikaans bestseller Plaasmoord. Generally, the book was a page-turner and very fast-paced. Weeping Waters is a book that will make you think about how your own country and history have shaped you and influenced the present day. My only excuse for being late to the Karin Brynard party is that crime fiction is not my choice of genre, I am more of a historical fiction kind of girl.

“A slow-burner that gets hotter and hotter as the pages turn.’’ – Mike Nicole

I found Weeping Waters at our local library, Muizenburg Library

Get yourself a copy from @loot.com @exclusivebooks 

Product: Weeping Waters

Author: Kary Brynard

Publisher: Penguin Random House SA

ISBN: 9780143539124

Genre: Crime Fiction

3 Books That Helped Me Survive My Pregnancy Woes

Books have always been my safe place. 3 books made me feel better, helping me survive my pregnancy woes.  Reading has been my lifesaver since day one of this process.

 

Mhudi by Sol T. Plaatje

A wonderful book that was first published in 1940. It is an epic story of love, courage, determination, and the ability to face your innermost fears. This is a book that I would recommend to any young man who is just beginning to understand himself, his family, and those around him. It has many lessons of life that we can all relate to

 

 

The Gold Diggers by Sue Nyathi

Sue Nyathi’s recently launched her book, The Gold Diggers. I was certainly not expecting to read quite a sad story. Sad is not the right word, unfortunate maybe? I have friends who are from Zim, Ghana, and Nigeria. As I was reading The Gold Diggers I realized the contrast between my friends from Zim and the people I was reading about. Yes sure, my friends’ families came here way before Zim fell but still, I could not fathom any of them having to cross the crocodile-filled river seeking refuge and work in SA. All the characters that Nyathi narrated in this book, is someone’s story. The last part of the book was even sadder (for me), it just tore my heart. If only books like The Gold Diggers would stir enough emotion to change perceptions and the nonchalant attitude towards our brethren. Thank you, Sue, for writing these stories!

 

 

The Hairdresser of Harare  – Tendai Huchu

This book is amazing! It’s a really well-written story of a young hairdresser who is gay and falls in love with his friend. I know many people who have gone through similar experiences and it really hits home. It’s very interesting to see how others handle things differently from how I would handle them. It is important that children are taught that it’s okay to be different as well as accepted for who they are – no matter their sexuality! We still have a long way to go but things are getting better, there is hope in humanity!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5 Ways To Get Involved In Annual World Book Day

Today is the annual celebration of World Book Day. 

What is World Book Day?

In 1995, Unesco launched World Book Day and Copyright Day, which are observed in more than 100 countries on different dates. World Book Day is basically a ”fun day” for children to celebrate books and appreciate reading.

Children in the UK go to school dressed as their favourite fictional characters and heroes. In South Africa, campaigns are run with the aim of distributing books (in different languages) to children across the country.

This year, The National Library of South Africa (NLSA)  celebrated with a door-to-door reading campaign. Nal’ibali, the national reading-for-enjoyment campaign, is giving away books to the value of R250 000.

Why Should We Celebrate World Book Day?

To promote children’s literacy and reading culture. And it is the one day when authors are celebrated and appreciated for their creativity. That’s it really!

How Can You Get Involved?

  1. You can join hands with Nal’ibali, Exclusive Books, and SABA by purchasing selected children’s books from selected stores and placing them inside the Nal’ibali donation bins.
  2. Become a supporter, volunteer, or sponsor of initiatives like Read to Rise. Read to Rise is a non-profit organization committed to promoting youth literacy in schools in SA. It was founded by husband and wife team Athol Williams and Taryn Lock conducting classroom programs and school visits in Mitchells Plain and Soweto.
  3. Organise a fundraising event. Why not? Get in touch with oganisations like Help2Read.  They will give you tips on how to start a fundraising campaign.
  4. Buy Books in bulk and donate them to schools and literacy campaigns.
  5. An easy one could be joining a campaign on social media. Use these tags #BUYABOOK, #READ_A_BOOK to promote books or simply start a conversation.

Give us a shout if you want more information on how to get involved or perhaps to share some ideas. Better yet, buy your books online and donate them.

Before You Go

Here are some storybooks you could purchase.

1. Oaky and The Sun by Athol Williams and Illustrated by Taryn Lock
Oaky and the Sun is an inspiring story about an acorn who is searching for the right direction to grow – it’s about finding your true purpose.

2.  Vivi and Oye and the Special Calf by Hallo Angala and Illustrated by Sara Nakalila
Daisy is a black and white calf who talks to Vivi and Oye about the effects of littering on farm animals. Also the importance of maintaining a clean environment.

 

 

2017 New Book Release: Our Favourite 15 Book Releases

I don’t know about you guys, but I’m almost feeling overwhelmed by the multitude of new releases we’ve been subjected to this year. Both mainstream and self-published authors have been showing us flames with their literary pieces.

It’s extremely difficult for me as a re-seller – having to share space with shelves of books staring down at me – coercing me into reading them! The levels of restraint it takes to avoid buying my own stock! Thank the heavens for gratuitous sales reps and their freebies.

Earlier in the year, a publisher challenged us to a reading marathon on Social Media, and naturally, I had to join in. That kind of social media hype gets me into a lot of trouble and now my brain is fried! Especially after reading Wilbur Smith’s River God. With 4 more books from the Egyptian series still to go, I can’t just stop now – they’re taunting me.

I thought I’d save you the trouble and share a list (in no particular order) of some of my favorite titles released this year that I can heartily recommend:

  1. PMB: What Dreams Are Made Of series by Leleti the Author  (Please click link for book costs)
  2. The Blessed Girl by Angela Makholwa (R205)
  3. Dare not Linger by Mandla Langa (R300)
  4. Khwezi: The Remarkable Story of Fezekile Ntsukela by Redi Tlhabi  (R240)
  5. Reweaving the Soul of the Nation by Mmatshilo Motsei (R200)
  6. Welcome to Lagos by Chubundu Onuzo (R255)
  7. Reflecting Rogue by Pumla Dineo Gqola (R225)
  8. Letters to my Comrades by Z Pallo Jordan (R305)
  9. From A to B 2nd Edition by Bonang Matheba (R210)
  10. Skollie – One Man’s Struggle to Survive by Telling Stories by John W. Fredericks (R240)
  11. Miss Behave by Malebo Sephodi (R205)
  12. Dancing the Death Drill by Fred Khumalo (R190)
  13. An A to Z of Amazing South African Women by Ambre Nicolson (R275)
  14. Emperor Shaka the Great: A Zulu Epic by Mazisi Kunene (R255)
  15. Stay with Me by Ayobamu Adebayo (R235)

Recently a good friend of mine, Tshego Monaisa tells me Kwela Books have now released an omnibus of hers; Mokopi Shale and Cheryl Ntumy books called Sapphire 3-in-1 (R170). 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is but a few books that have come out. One wonders what 2018 will bring!

Let me know what you have read and recommend:)

Angy

xxx

Meet The Author: 10 Year Old Award Winning Author – Stacey Fru

I just cannot fathom how a 10-year-old writes books & poems; is a motivational speaker, storyteller, poet, guitarist, ballerina, TV host, chair lady, and teacher. At that age, I can’t think where I was or doing but I know I was naughty and always staying out later than my 6 pm curfew.

My friends and I were always playing games or mostly yapping the whole day about nothing really. Nothing motivational or inspiring nonetheless we all had fun. Victorine Mbong Shu contacted me a week ago about her 10-year-old, Stacey Fru.

Obviously, this caught my attention immediately. Stacey who is possibly the youngest African award-winning author wrote an illustrated 108 pages book titled; ‘Smelly Cats’ without her parents’ knowledge at the tender age of 7. She wrote a second book; ‘Bob and the Snake’ at 8 and before she turned 9, she had accumulated 3 awards for her books and her works.

Smelly Cats is about cats who are cousins. Even though the cats come from the same family, they are bound to have differences due to who they are.

This book is about different social, religious, and schooling backgrounds as well as challenges posed by the suburbs where the cats are staying. However, just like in real life, cats are naughty and behave badly. They fight a lot and even got into trouble in their school. According to Stacey, the constant fights are real reflections of daily life.

“Life is not a bed of hatred. You grow better when you fight to spread love and have fun in a child’s way”, says Stacey

Smelly Cats by Stacey Fru (Pic Supplied)

Her second book according to Stacey is that no matter how much they try, children will always be naughty and parents will always be hard. Bob the Snake is about Bob who loves snakes with his whole heart.

He is super happy because he heard his parents planning to buy him a real snake for his birthday.

A few weeks after he received the snake, he was crowned the neighborhood Hero for saving the family from a thief who broke into their house while they were asleep.

Ironically, Lob the snake is the same reason why Bob runs away from home for days. During school holidays, the family decides to travel to Disney Land.

The question is will Lob the snake be allowed in the plane or not and how will the story end…..

Stacey is apparently on her third book ‘Smelly Cats on Vacation’ which will be published in 2017.You can contact both Stacey/ her mom on the details below or get a copy of their book on our site.

Email: [email protected]
Mobile: 082 548 6385
Website: www.staceyfru.co.aza
Twitter: @staceyfru
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/staceyfru

 

Easy Motion Tourist – Leye Adenle

I have to say that I’m super glad and impressed to see that more books authored by African writers are finding their way into mainstream book stores. We are also seeing a growing number of refreshing and gripping literary fiction titles being released. Take Easy Motion Tourist by Leye Adenle for instance; Easy Motion Tourist is a crime story, a contemporary dark thriller set in Lagos featuring an naive tourist, Guy Collins. He meets up with and Amaka and together they set out on a quest to expose the trade in body parts. This engaging thriller conveys a vivid account of a dark and violent Lagos making you forget that this story is just a fiction!

Leye Adenle was in South Africa for his book tour a few weeks ago, and I needed to understand some few things:

AAB: I love Nigeria, well Lagos. Never been there but of course reading literary fiction set in Lagos, I get to imagine it, the city & people. For instance, Guy Collins and I are tourists in Lagos, we are both intrigued and fascinated by the city but we went there as two naïve tourists! Would you think the context(dark/violence/corruption/intensity) of Easy Motion Tourist displays a fair view of contemporary Lagos?

LA: I think Lagos, like most mega cities of the world, is a complex character. In Lagos you will find beauty, the most moving acts of human compassion, the resilience, creativity, inventiveness of people. You will find faith like you have never observed it before. People praising and worshiping an almighty giver and protector as if he were standing at the pulpit in their church. You will find kindness and forgiveness, you will find goodness and yes, godliness, but you will also find darkness where you expect to find it and where you don’t. I believe this describes most cities in the world and the people who live in them.

AAB: And how was it received? I mean readers in Lagos, Nigeria?

LA: Lagosians, as they are called, have largely loved the book. Till date, touch wood, not one Lagosian has said to me, ‘Leye, how dare you.’ Rather, the recurring soundbite has been, ‘Wow, you really know Lagos.’ Again, touch wood. The honourable minister for tourism might yet read it and say, ‘you are banned! You and your book. Banned!’

AAB: It came across well to me anyway, in a way you are exposing these injustices happening in Lagos. Again, it blew me away when I felt like you are aiming to get across this gross violence against women – violence against sex workers. Where does this come from? Perhaps an activist for the welfare of women? I mean how or why did you decide to tackle this issue?

LA: The story came to me out of a conversation with my mum and her boys. My two brothers. We were discussing everything under the sun, as usual, when the debate segued to naked mutilated bodies often found on express ways in Nigeria. Usually female. Usually young. The consensus has always been that the bodies are victims of murder for rituals, and that they were prostitutes.
We were debating and discussing cause and protection, especially the argument for decriminalization of sex work (which I strongly advocate) when the idea for the story came to me.

AAB: I will assume prostitution is not legal that side but the constant brutality surrounding them is quite hectic. Even here in SA sex workers are not well protected.
And then there is the ‘heroin’ Amaka. I need to understand how you managed to voice her. How difficult or easy was it to write for a female character?

LA: Writing Amaka is simple. She’s exactly like many women I know. She’s an amalgamation of friends, relatives, colleagues, lovers, potential lovers who shunned me. She is, to put it quite simply, woman. Phenomenally.

AAB: I refused to think this is a romance story. When you started writing Easy Motion Tourist, were there thoughts/ideas of the book leading to a romance relationship between Guy and Amaka?

LA: When I started writing, I did not foresee anything beyond the theme. On a line by line, chapter by chapter basis, for instance, I did not know what any of the characters would do. They sometimes surprised me with their actions. On Amaka’s part, she shocked me. At times while writing I was like, ‘Amaka!’ Other times I simply shook my head at her. She’s her own person, unapologetically and with complete agency. I cannot take credit or blame for any of her actions.

AAB: Lately we speak and hear of decolonising African Literature. The contemporary African Literature. We hear and speak about books authored in African languages. Your opinion? Would you write in Yoruba? And why you think it matters? Which it does.

LA: My grandfather wrote in Yoruba. I write in English. No one can lay claim to any language as theirs. Language belongs to humanity. I cannot be accused of cultural appropriation for use of English, or any other language for that matter. The important issue for me is communication. I want to communicate. I want to be read. I want to be heard. I communicate well in English, as do a lot of people in the world that I write for. Would I write in Yoruba? Of course. If I’m telling a story that can only be told in Yoruba, or that is only meant for Yoruba speaking people. Until I’m about to write such a story, I’ll be content with being translated into Yoruba.

I would rather the colonised people of Africa shed the imposed religions of their colonisers

 

Easy Motion Tourist – Leye Adenele is an incredible, brilliantly written story that surely should be adapted into a (well-funded) film.

 

Conversations With A Gentle Soul

My first year in Cape Town; coming back from a walk at the Company’s Garden, with my head down I stepped into an elevator without noticing that I am sharing a lift with an icon. I raised my head not to greet him but to answer his question, “You’re new here?”

I immediately recognised this man’s face but couldn’t put my finger on where I knew him from. It was only after I saw his smile that I remembered who this man was. I’ll never forget that smile, such an enchanting smile. The same smile on the cover of his book.

I was sharing a lift with Ahmed Kathrada. In all the while he was chatting to me, all I wanted to ask was, “Do you know who you are. Really, do you know who you are? And you are speaking to me!”

Before I could get a word in, the elevator door was opening and he says to me, “I hope you enjoy the rest of your stay here in Cape Town.” I must have mentioned my relocation to Cape Town. I was clearly in a trance the whole time.

Still today I kick myself for not giving my condolences on his long time friend that he refers to in his book as his elder brother, the late President Nelson Mandela.

I will forever hold this memory and tell my kids how I once bumped into a living angel. An angel who sacrificed a big part of his life for my freedom and for theirs, for the democracy of our country! The man was in prison for 26 years and 3 months, eighteen of which he spent at Robben Island along with the great giants, Walter Sisulu, Nelson Mandela, Goven Mbeki, Raymond Mhlaba to name a few.

See, my child or children will be I suppose ‘coloured’ – biracial and it was because of human beings like Ahmed Kathrada who made sure this was possible. I share a life with a man I would have been banned from being with. Today him and I aren’t hiding this love for each other. It still might be distasteful for others, but who cares right? 🙂

In spite of what he and other struggle icons went through for the country, Ahmed Kathrada still manages to smile, to joke about, to find and give love and more importantly to forgive.  He is indeed a gentle soul, a humble man. He played an incredible role that we should never forget.

Conversations with a Gentle Soul echos the essence of the man I met for literally a minute. He is as Sahm Venter describes him; a funny and a charming ‘chap’. She covers a lot questions I promised myself to ask should I meet him again. I’m still blown away at his humility and modesty. Sahm asks him how people should judge him for his contributions and he says,

There’s nothing special that I can say. Just that I had the privilege of working with comrades and leaders who inspired me all my life. I will remember that privilege ’till the end’.

From the book, you get to know and appreciate this gentle soul. It is a great piece of literature and I hope that South Africans and Africans as a whole get to read and know this man whose acts of heroism helped shape our freedom and equality. An icon we must celebrate while he is still alive (even though according to the book, he is very shy!).

Sorry I’ll not be lending out this book, I’m adding it to the pile of collections I’m saving for my kids 🙂

You can order Conversations with a Gentle Soul here for your children too.

 

 

 

Book Ideas for the Men in Your Life

Don’t  you just sometimes feel the urge to shove a book into a dude’s hand to just get him reading something? Check out these book ideas for the men in your life.

Thomas Sankara Speaks (R160)

Thomas Isidore Noël Sankara was a Burkinabé military captain, Marxist revolutionary, pan-Africanist theorist, feminist, and President of Burkina Faso from 1983 to 1987. Viewed by supporters as a charismatic and iconic figure of revolution, he is commonly referred to as “Africa’s Che Guevara”. This book is based on speeches and interviews from 1983 until his killing in 1987. Under Thomas Sankara, the revolutionary government of Burkina Faso mobilized women and youth to carry out literacy and immunization drives to sink wells, plant trees, build dams, erect housing to combat the oppression of women and transform exploitative relations on the land to free themselves. 

CLICK HERE TO BUY

Broke and Broken by Leon Sadiki and Lucas Ledwaba (R165)

Through a combination of reporting and photojournalism,the book is divided into three parts.  Leon Sadiki and Lucas Ledwaba describe the lives and lived experiences  of individual miners and their families. This book explores one of Southern Africa’s tragedies and it is told by the men from Pondoland and Lesotho, the labour reserves that oiled the gold mining industry.

CLICK HERE TO BUY

Nothing Left To Steal by Mzilikazi wa Afrika (R235)

If guy is an avid reader on the politics and day-to-day scandals in SA, then this is a good book to get him. Nothing Left To Steal is a tell-all detailed memoir of Sunday Times journalist Mzilikazi wa Afrika’s exposure of the R1.7 billion lease scandal between the then Police Commissioner Bheki Cele and property tycoon Roux Shabangu. Destined to defend and uphold the principles of democracy, his story is the inspiring tale of an ordinary man, armed with a pen, who challenged the proverbial giant that carried a sword in his sheath.

CLICK HERE TO BUY

 Pushing Boulders by Athol Williams (R240)

Pushing Boulders is about pursuing dreams.  It tells a powerful and inspirational story that will have your partner believing that even his most outrageous dreams are possible. Athol Williams tells of how, after struggling through university, political unrest and racism, he managed to construct a lucrative career as a senior executive and found a successful business.  It offers readers an insight into the life of an accomplished person, revealing his doubts and heartaches as well as the secrets to his ability to pick himself up and soldier on. At the height of his successful career he gives it all up to launch a series of enterprises contributing to social development, pursuing his mission to use education to enable and inspire other South Africans to thrive.

CLICK HERE TO BUY

Vuyo’s: From a Big Dreamer to Living the Dream by Miles Kubheka (R135)

Remember the Hansa rags-to-riches television advert of an entrepreneur named Vuyo who starts selling boerewors rolls and grows it into a billion-rand global business? When Miles Kubhka realised that Vuyo was fictitious he promptly trademarked the name and became Vuyo.   He starts a business with a small boerewors cart and ultimately owns a big company called Vuyo’s Original Wors. The business flourishes to become a big brand and eventually goes international. In his book, Kubheka shares insights and tips for budding entrepreneurs to achieve their own dreams of business success.

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To Quote Myself – A Memoir (R160)

In To Quote Myself, Khaya recounts entertaining and moving stories about his roots and upbringing in rural Transkei, how he made his mark at school as well as his time spent studying advertising and as a stand-up comedian. He also shares his political views, how he overcame homelessness to become one of the most influential marketers in South Africa and he gives the reader a dose of the truly weird and wonderful that is routinely a part of his life.

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Easy Motion Tourist by Lele Adenle (R250)

Easy Motion Tourist is a compelling crime novel set in contemporary Lagos.  A woman’s mutilated body is discarded by the side of a club near one of the main hotels in Victoria Island. Guy Collins, a British hack a bystander, is picked up by the police as a potential suspect. After experiencing the unpleasant realities of a Nigerian police cell, he is rescued by Amaka, the good ‘Samaritan’ for Lagos working girls. She assumes Collins will broadcast the city’s witchcraft and body parts trade and is dragged in the hunt for men who runs a peculiar body parts trade. The blurb for Easy Motion Tourist describes it as ‘Tarantino lands in Lagos.’ 

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Permanent Removal by Alan Cowell (R205)

Permanent Removal is a political thriller of gruesome murders. The South African security forces set up a roadblock to intercept a car near the city of Port Elizabeth. Two of the four anti-apartheid activists in the car were secretly targeted for assassination. The police abducted the four and murdered them in cold blood. Their burnt bodies were found later near the Port Elizabeth suburb of Bluewater Bay. These murders are one of apartheid’s murkiest episodes. 

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Indaba, My Children by Credo Mutwa (R235)

Indaba, My children is an introduction to African history and cultural practices. Credo Mutwa explains about Africa and her people, the different migrations of years before;  the symbols in African art and cultural practices. The story continues all the way up to the colonial era, when a Portuguese Kapitanoh and his crew arrive on the African shore. Indaba, My Children is a great book if for your man is  interested in the cultural life of Africa and the human experience as it is filtered into myth.
Excellent book!!

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Chaka by Thomas Mofolo (R205)

Chaka by Thomas Mofolo is the first of many works of literature that take Shaka, the great Zulu leader as its subject. A mythic retelling of the story of Shaka’s rise and fall. Mofolo presents a study of human passion, of uncontrolled and then uncontrollable ambition leading to the moral destruction of the human character.  

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Meet the Author: Oswald Kucherera

We had a great chat with Oswald Kucherera the other day. He talks about his new book The Exodus Down South.

It takes me 45 minutes by train to Cape Town city and having a book to read helps a lot. You avoid eye contact with the restless kids and close yourself off to the relentless conveyor belt of blind singers asking for money. I took The Exodus Down South book.

Oswald Kucherera was born in Nyajena village in Masvingo near Great Zimbabwe. His story is about a man who does possess an inkling of self-entitlement. He did not come to South Africa to steal anyone’s job or woman. He came with the hope, to start afresh.

This is his story.

“Growing up I wanted to become an accountant, even when doing my A-Levels I was doing accounting and geography. I worked in a bank, starting as a ledger clerk and also being trained to become a teller. I got exposed to reading when I came to South Africa. And through reading, I thought, “ah, I think I can also write”. I started writing poetry. I started going to poetry circles with friends. We used to go to the Tagaras in Obs and the Anarchist Bookshop.

There is a group called the Poetics Music Not For the Sake of it and Black Consciousness Poetry. I would float around such groups. I then tried writing short stories and wrote a very beautiful short story called Travelling on the Khayelitsha train. It was this story that announced my arrival as a writer. I got invited to events to speak about my writing.

Before we came here, we were sold a lie. We were told that if we go to South Africa things will be better, it will be ok.  It was not the ”heaven” we were told it was. We realised that South Africa has the same issues as us and came to understand why South Africans can be edgy when it comes to us. Like if you go to places like Khayelitsha and see how people are living in poverty, you cannot put blame on their attitude toward people like us.

I had been interviewed a lot by people trying to understand the lives of people who are moved from their places of birth;  immigrants and refugees. I felt like I should write a book in addition to some kind of material for people to understand our struggles. Zim continues to be stagnant, at least here you feel that there is some kind of opportunities. At least you are building some networks and those things help you a lot to further opportunities in life.

The Exodus Down South

Since my book came out I am under pressure from my readers to write more. They feel The Exodus Down South was a bit too short. I learned a lot from this project. It was self-funded, and there were challenges in marketing the book. I had to go all through all the processes but found that marketing the book was the most testing.

Going self-publishing is always the best route but you have to know how to market your book. I mean even with traditional publishers, they will expect you to also promote the book but at least there will be someone helping you.

At the moment I am a Human Rights Peer Educator at Africa Unite and a cub research writer for Science Stars Magazine.  When I started my activism, we built a resource centre in Khayelitsha, Ambo. We had programs like poetry sessions, music programs, and film screenings with kids. While we were doing documentary screenings, there was a lady who highlighted the genocide happening in West Papua that people are currently not aware of.

So we decided to screen The Road to Home documentary, a documentary about the leader of West Papua,  Benny Wenda who is in exile in the UK but importantly it exposes the human rights abuses in West Papua. After seeing the documentary, we decided to join the online Free West Papua campaign and started corresponding with the leaders.

As a community organisation, we are trying to create awareness around the West Papua campaign. We are running a petition which we’ll be taking to the United Nations and we need about 10,000 signatures but our aim is to send the petition to the African Union.

On the 6th-19th March, we are hosting a photographic exhibition of the West Papua campaign to create more awareness around this genocide”. – Oswald Kucherera

His book is available right here at All African Books: The Exodus Down South 

You can follow Oswald on Facebook to learn more about his book.