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Book Bites: 29 July

Published in the Sunday Times

Divided CountryDivided Country: The History of South African Cricket Retold 1914-1950s
André Odendaal, Krish Reddy and Christopher Merrett, BestRed, R295

Two years ago the first volume of a virtual lifetime’s work for the authors came into being. Cricket and Conquest began the retelling of South Africa’s cricket history, a saga misrepresented and distorted over more than 200 years since the game’s arrival in 1795. Now the second volume is here and the next two, Batting for Freedom (the 1950s to 2016) and Correcting the Record, cannot be far off. Divided Country is as impressive as its companion volume, continuing to correct a history that previously was written as a white man’s game. It follows the history of South Africa from union, when black people were all but written out of the constitution, to apartheid and the division of cricket into seven “South Africas” along the lines of the segregated state. It is also the story of the women’s game, a neglected aspect too. Archie Henderson

The Testament of Loki
Joanne Harris, Orion, R285

This follows on where The Gospel of Loki ended – Ragnarok has come to pass and the kingdom of Asgard has fallen. Loki, the charismatic trickster god who started all the trouble, finds himself imprisoned in the netherworld. But no prison can hold the god of mischief for long and Loki escapes into a realm where people still dream of the Norse gods. He follows the trail and finds himself inside a video game where the characters are all too familiar. The transition from being a dreamy retelling of Norse legends to urban fantasy is expertly done and Loki comes across as completely at home in the modern world. A highly entertaining romp filled with pop-culture references and old lore. Sally Partridge @sapartridge

The Man Who Didn't CallThe Man Who Didn’t Call
Rosie Walsh, Mantle, R290

It’s aptly called Ghosted in the US. Ghosted means cutting off contact with someone, ignoring all messages and phone calls, and the clincher: not providing a reason. This happens to Sarah. She meets Eddie. They fall in love and then he goes on holiday. He never contacts her again and she is convinced something must have happened to him. But what if her friends are right: he is not interested. Her search leads her to resolve a terrible incident in her past. The Man Who Didn’t Call is a refreshing mystery/romance. Jennifer Platt @Jenniferdplatt

Book details

  • Divided Country: The History of South African Cricket Retold 1914-1960 by André Odendaal, Krish Reddy, Christopher Merrett
    EAN: 9781928246169
    Find this book with BOOK Finder!

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