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Archive for the ‘Reviews’ Category

Stephanie Alexander Reviews Love is War: The Modimolle Monster by Karyn Maughan and Shaun Swingler

Love is War: The Modimolle MonsterVerdict: stick

WHEN Karyn Maughan, an investigative journalist at eNCA, rushed this book into print a few months after the “Modimolle Monster” trial and conviction last July, she may well have had an eye on the sensational Oscar Pistorius trial lying ahead. South Africa would soon become famed for its murder trials. Why not get on the bandwagon early, and why not give the book a serious, quasi-political cast to make it more acceptable to readers elsewhere?

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Amanda de Lange resenseer Speels deur Elle Roux

SpeelsUitspraak: stokkie

Elle Roux bevind haar in dieselfde dilemma as menige geskeide vrou wat op ’n meer “volwasse” leeftyd na liefde en ’n maat op soek is.

Sy vertel haar eie verhaal in Speels en trek die gordyn van haar slaapkamer oop sodat almal wat wil, kan inkyk.

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Dineke Volschenk resenseer October deur Zoë Wicomb

OctoberUitspraak: wortel

Met die lees van October deur Zoë Wicomb is ek weer verbaas dat Wicomb nie meer bekend is in Suid-Afrika nie.

Sy sit met gemak op die boonste rakke van Suid-Afrika se skrywers, hoewel sy reeds lank in ­Engeland woon.

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Sean Darge Reviews Tax, Lies and Red Tape by Dawie Roodt with Linette Retief

Tax, Lies and Red TapeVerdict: carrot

Dawie Roodt believes South Africans are chronically misinformed about their economy. In Tax, Lies and Red Tape: Confessions of an Unreconstructed Neoliberal Fundamentalist, the book he has written with Linette Retief, he is determined to change this, discussing the economy’s macro and micro elements and possibilities with playful thoroughness.

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Rebecca Kelley Reviews October by Zoë Wicomb

OctoberVerdict: critical carrot

“Mercia Murray is a woman of fifty-two years who has been left.” So opens Zoë Wicomb’s latest novel, October (The New Press). In a different kind of post-breakup tale, Mercia would cry over a carton of ice cream before pulling herself together and embarking on an exciting adventure of self-discovery. She would open a cupcake shop, maybe, or renovate a Tuscan villa. This is not that story.

It is October, a dark and drizzly time in Scotland, where she has been living for the last 25 years. Mercia packs her bags and returns to her homeland of South Africa. On the other side of the world, it’s the heart of spring. But there are no easy metaphors of hope and renewal here. Spring — and home — can be deceiving.

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Riette Rust resenseer Ritmes van ons lyf deur Christina Landman, Nicki Spies en Ralph Barnard

Ritmes van ons lyfUitspraak: wortel met kritiek

In Ritmes van ons lyf (Naledi, 2014) gee drie kenners raad oor hoe jy en jou maat weer op dieselfde seksuele ritme kan dans.

Afrikaanse niefiksie oor seks is beslis nodig, want in baie verhoudings skiet kommunikasie oor intimiteit steeds tekort. In dié boek is daar onder meer nuttige raad aan vroue wat sukkel om ’n orgasme te kry en aan mans wat ’n lae libido het, maar soms is die oplossings ’n bietjie simplisties. Die skrywers kon byvoorbeeld meer as net die druktegniek vir premature ejakulasie voorgestel het.

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Erika de Beer resenseer Raaiselspieël deur Chanette Paul

RaaiselspieelUitspraak: wortel

Wanneer Nils van der Sluijs vermoor word, tref dit sy heldersiende dogter, Frieda Fouché, etlike kilometers daarvandaan dadelik soos ’n weerligstraal.

Dis nie of Nils, wat kunstenaarsroem gesmaak het met sy naakstudies van vet vroue, en sy dogter so na aan mekaar was nie.

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Rob Gaylard Reviews A Passion for Freedom by Mamphela Ramphele

A Passion for FreedomVerdict: carrot

Mamphela Ramphele’s name will always be linked with that of Steve Biko – as she points out, she is a kind of honorary “widow” – but here in A Passion for Freedom (Tafelberg) we have her own story, in her own words. It is a story of loss and (although this sounds clichéd) survival and triumph over adversity. It is told dispassionately and honestly, with grace and dignity.
Her academic training affords her a degree of detachment – she is, to use her own term, a kind of “participant observer” – and allows for perceptive analyses of her position as a black female activist in the struggle, as a community health worker, as a medical doctor – and eventually as an academic, as vice- chancellor of UCT, as a director of the World Bank, and lately as the leader of Agang and now presidential candidate for the DA.

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Keith Millar Reviews Half of One Thing by Zirk van den Berg

Half of One ThingVerdict: carrot

Zirk Van Den Berg has produced a terrific read with his latest book Half Of One Thing. It is a historical war adventure, a love story and a spy thriller all intriguingly interwoven against the backdrop of the 2nd Anglo Boer War.

Gideon Lancaster is a New Zealand soldier fighting for the British forces during the Boer War. His mother was born in Holland and, as a consequence, he is fluent in Dutch. Using this skill, he is able to infiltrate a Boer Commando as a spy for the British. As he gets to know – goes into battle with and learns to admire – the men in the commando, he finds himself conflicted as a far as loyalties are concerned.

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Sarie se jonger lesers, Nina Swart en Cailin Spickett, resenseer Amper Einstein, Die land verby donker en ander jeugboeke

Amper EinsteinDagboek van 'n wimpIn die land verby donkerEendag op 'n reendagGalopRoald Dahl se vreeslike versies

Uitspraak: wortels

Dis vir my soms moeilik om ʼn jeugboek te oordeel, omdat ek nie self kinders het nie en dit regtig baie jare gelede was dat ek self vanuit ‘n jonger perspektief jeugverhale gelees het. Wat dalk vir my na ʼn oulike boek klink, is vir ʼn jongmens van vandag dalk glad nie so boeiend en leesbaar nie. Tye het baie verander en hoe ek groot geword het en die dinge wat my gefassineer het, verskil baie van die omstandighede waaronder die jeug vandag grootword. Hulle staan baie ander uitdagings in die oë en kan dalk ʼn storie oor die stad en dinge wat daar gebeur meer waardeer as die ongekompliseerde koshuisstories wat ek so graag gelees het.

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