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Archive for the ‘Zimbabwe’ Category

First round of international authors for Open Book Festival 2017 announced

The authors have been announced for the seventh Open Book Festival and you can have the chance to play a part in it.

Brought to you by the Book Lounge and The Fugard Theatre, Open Book Festival will be presented from 6 to 10 September, once again offering a world-class selection of book launches, panel discussions, workshops, masterclasses, readings, performances and more. The event, which also includes the popular Comics Fest, #cocreatePoetica, children’s and outreach programmes, takes place at The Fugard Theatre, District Six Homecoming Centre and The Book Lounge in Cape Town.

Open Book Festival has established itself as one of South Africa’s most innovative and leading book festivals. Last year, nearly 10 000 people attended the festival’s 125 events featuring 251 authors and it has been shortlisted twice for the London Book Fair Excellence Awards. It is committed to creating a platform to celebrate South African writers, as well as hosting top international authors. The festival strives to instill an interest in and love of reading among young attendees, while the programme is designed to engage, entertain and inspire conversations among festival goers long after the event.

“In addition to announcing the first round of incredible international authors for Open Book Festival 2017, we are inviting people to help be a part of it and launching a Thundafund campaign for this year’s festival,” says festival director Mervyn Sloman.

“Anyone who works on major events will have an understanding of the budgetary challenges and current financial climate that are part and parcel of the sector. Open Book is no different and while we continue to work with key sponsors, we are inviting people who recognise the value of the festival to get involved and support us, so we can retain our independence and continue to put on an event of the scale and calibre visitors have come to expect. You can support the campaign for as little as R100 and every rand makes a difference.”

To contribute visit www.thundafund.com/project/openbookfestival

“We are excited to be announcing our first round of international authors and have again compiled a useful guide of their books so you can start reading now.”

Author: Ayọ̀bámi Adébáyọ̀ (Nigeria)
Books include: Stay With Me
Why we’re excited: Ayọ̀bámi was shortlisted for the 2017 Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction. In 2015, she was listed by the Financial Times as one of the bright stars of Nigerian literature. She has been a writer in residence at numerous institutions and she was shortlisted for the Miles Morland Scholarship in 2014 and 2015.
 
 
Author: Paul Beatty (USA)
Books include: Slumberland, Tuff, The White Boy Shuffle and The Sellout. Also poetry book Big Bank Take Little Bank and Joker, Joker, Deuce. Editor of Hokum: An Anthology of African-American Humor
Why we’re excited: The current Man Booker Winner for The Sellout.
 
 
 

Author: Maylis de Kerangal (France. Attending thanks to the support of IFAS)
Books include: Mend the Living, Birth of a Bridge; the novella Tangente vers l’est
Why we’re excited: Mend the Living was longlisted for the Man Booker International Prize 2016 and won the Wellcome Book Prize 2017.
 
 
Author: Petina Gappah (Zimbabwe)
Books include: The Book of Memory and short story collections An Elegy for Easterly and Rotten Row
Why we’re excited: An Elegy for Easterly won the Guardian First Book Prize in 2009.
 
 
 
Author: Nathan Hill (USA)
Books include: The Nix
Why we’re excited: Hill’s debut novel The Nix was named one of the year’s best books by The New York Times, The Washington Post, NPR, Slate and Amazon, among others. It was also the L.A. Times Book Prize for First Fiction and will be published worldwide in 30 languages.
 
 
Author: Elina Hirvonen (Finland. Attending thanks to the support of the Embassy of Finland)
Books include: When I Forgot, Farthest from Death, When Time Runs Out
Why we’re excited: This acclaimed author, journalist and documentary filmmaker has had her work translated into seven languages. When Time Runs Out was chosen as ‘The Most Important Book of the Year 2015’ in a project by the Finnish Broadcasting Company.
 
Author: Scaachi Koul (Canada. Attending thanks to the support of Canada Council for the Arts)
Books include: Her debut collection of essays in One Day We’ll All Be Dead and None of This Will Matter
Why we’re excited: A culture writer for BuzzFeed, Scaachi’s writing has also appeared in The New Yorker, The Hairpin, The Globe and Mail, and Jezebel.
 
 
Author: Ali Land (UK)
Books include: Good Me Bad Me
Why we’re excited: Good Me Bad Me has been translated into over twenty languages. After graduating from university with a degree in Mental Health, Ali Land spent a decade working as a Child and Adolescent Mental Health nurse in hospitals and schools in the UK and Australia.
 
 
Author: Ken Liu (USA)
Books include: The Grace of Kings, The Wall of Storms, The Paper Menagerie
Why we’re excited: Liu’s short stories have won a Nebula, two Hugos, a World Fantasy Award and a Science Fiction & Fantasy Translation Award. His short story, “The Paper Menagerie”, was the first work of fiction to win all three major science fiction awards, the Hugo, the Nebula and the World Fantasy Award.
 
 
Author: Fiston Mwanza Mujila (DRC. Attending thanks to the support of the Goethe Institut)
Books include: Tram 83
Why we’re excited: His writing has been awarded numerous prizes, including the Prix du Monde and he was longlisted for MB International
 
 
 

Author: Chibundu Onuzo (Nigeria)
Books include: The Spider King’s Daughter, Welcome to Lagos
Why we’re excited: The Spider King’s Daughter was shortlisted for the Dylan Thomas Prize and the Commonwealth Book Prize, and was longlisted for the Desmond Elliott Prize and the Etisalat Prize for Literature.
 
 
 

Author: Malin Persson Giolito (Sweden. Attending thanks to the support of The Embassy of Sweden)
Books include: Quicksand, the first of her novels to be translated into English
Why we’re excited: A former lawyer, her novel Quicksand was awarded the Best Crime Novel of the Year Award 2016, Sweden’s official suspense literature award, which is given by the Swedish Crime Writers’ Academy.
 
 
Author: Carl Frode Tiller (Norway. Attending thanks to support from NORLA)
Books include: The Encircling trilogy, Skråninga (The Slope)
Why we’re excited: His awards include the European Union Prize for Literature and Nordic Critics Prize. His Encircling trilogy has been twice nominated for the Nordic Council’s Prize. The trilogy is considered one of the great contemporary portraits of Nordic life. It has been adapted for the theatre and published in eighteen languages.
 
Author: Iman Verjee
Books include: Who will Catch us as we Fall, In Between Dreams
Why we’re excited: Winner of the 2012 Peters Fraser & Dunlop/City University Prize for Fiction for her debut novel In Between Dreams.
 
 
 
 
Author: Alex Wheatle (UK)
Books include: Crongton Knights, Liccle Bit, Brixton Rock, East of Acre Lane, The Seven Sisters, Island Songs, Checkers, The Dirty South
Why we’re excited: Known as ‘the Brixton Bard’ Alex was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list for services to literature in 2008. He is UK’s most read Black British author, with his books on school reading lists, he takes part in Black History Month every year, works with Booktrust and the Children’s Discovery Centre to promote reading and represents English PEN. Crongton Knights won the Guardian Children’s Fiction Prize 2016.
 
Author: Zoe Whittall (Canada. Attending thanks to support from Canada Council for the Arts)
Books include: The Best Kind of People, Holding Still for as Long as Possible
Why we’re excited: This award-winning Canadian author won a Lambda Literary award, was shortlisted for the Relit award, and was an American Library Association’s Stonewall Honor Book for Holding Still for as Long as Possible. She has also published three books of poetry.

The final programme will be available in early August, at which point bookings can be made at www.webtickets.co.za.

The seventh Open Book Festival will take place from 6 to 10 September at The Fugard Theatre, D6 Homecoming Centre, and The Book Lounge, from 10:00 to 21:00 each day. For further information visit www.openbookfestival.co.za.

For more information about and to support the Thundafund campaign, visit www.thundafund.com/project/openbookfestival

The Open Book Festival is made possible thanks to the support of its sponsors and partners: Leopard’s Leap, The Fugard Theatre, The District Six Museum, Open Society Foundation, Kingdom of the Netherlands, City of Cape Town, Townhouse Hotel, Penguin Random House, NB Publishers, Jonathan Ball Publishers, Pan Macmillan Publishers, The French Institute of South Africa, The Canada Council for the Arts, NORLA, the Embassy of Finland, the Embassy of Sweden, Dutch Foundation for Literature, PEN SA and the Goethe-Institut.

Stay With Me

Book details

 
 
 
Slumberland

 
 
 
 
Mend the Living

 
 
 

When I Forgot

 
 
 

One Day We'll All Be Dead and None of This Will Matter

 
 
 

Good Me, Bad Me

 
 
 

The Grace of Kings

 
 
 

Tram 83

 
 
 

The Spider King\'s Daughter

 
 
 

Quicksand

 
 
 

Encircling

 
 
 

Who Will Catch Us As We Fall

 
 
 

Crongton Knights

 
 
 

The Best Kind of People

 
 
 

The Book of Memory by Petina Gappah
EAN: 9780571249916
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Latest book in C.M. Elliott’s Sibanda series now available

Detective Inspector Jabulani Sibanda, a hard-bodied, bush-loving, instinctive crime fighter, is the focus of this series. He is based in a village on the borders of a national park in Matabeleland, but no one quite understands why such a rising star in the Zimbabwe police force has been banished to a rural backwater. The detective doesn’t object to the posting as it gives him the opportunity to pursue his passion for elephants, birds, trees, all things wild, and the love of his life, the illusive Berry Barton.

The series also features his sidekick, Sergeant Thadeus Ncube, an overweight, bumbling, multi-married policeman with a delicate digestive system who adores food, fishing and matters mechanical.

He is both more astute than his physical presence might imply and a discerning judge of character. It helps that the sergeant loves motors because the third in this triumvirate of law enforcers is Miss Daisy, an ancient, battered and truculent Land Rover that huffs and puffs through the bush, steams with indignation and breaks down at the most inappropriate moments. She is the bane of Sibanda’s life and the love of Ncube’s.

The comely PC Khumalo and the obsessively ordered and religious officer-in-charge, Stalin Mfumu, AKA Cold War, add to the mix at Gubu police station. This series will steep you in the African bush and Matabele culture and keep you guessing and laughing by turns. But murder in any environment, particularly the African wilderness, is a dangerous and often gruesome business. Together, our trio put their lives at risk as they investigate unique crimes and plumb the depths of Africa’s worst depravities.

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International Women’s Day: seven African woman writers you should have read by 2017

International Women’s Day (March 8) is a universal commemoration of the social, economic, political and cultural achievement of women.

The following quote by Nigerian author Chimamanda Adichie encapsulates both the necessity of celebrating a day committed to the empowerment of women, and how writing can aid the continuing empowerment of women worldwide:

“Many stories matter. Stories have been used to dispossess and to malign. But stories can also be used to empower, and to humanize. Stories can break the dignity of a people. But stories can also repair that broken dignity.”

Here follows a list of African woman writers whose stories matter:

The Translator

1. Leila Aboulela: Acclaimed – one of the most suitable adjectives to describe Sudanese author Leila Aboulela. She has published five novels in 16 years, wowing literary critics with her debut The Translator, which was nominated for the Orange Prize and chosen as a Notable Book of the Year by the New York Times. Her novel second novel, Minaret, also received a nomination for the Orange Prize and her third novel, Lyrics Alley made the longlist for the same prize in 2011. Lyrics Alley was awarded the Fiction Winner of Scottish Book Awards and was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers Prize. In 2000, Aboulela was awarded the coveted Caine Prize for African Writing for her short story The Museum. Aboulela’s work has been translated into 14 languages, and is predominantly influenced by the Muslim faith and her experiences of cross-culturalisation.

Nervous Conditions

2. Tsitsi Dangarembga: Zimbabwean author, poet, activist and filmmaker Tsitsi Dangarembga was born in Bulawayao and schooled in England. Her debut, the semi-autobiographical Nervous Conditions (1988), is themed around race, colonialism, and gender in post-colonial and present-day Zimbabwe. Nervous Conditions was awarded the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize in 1989, and is still regarded as a significant contribution to African feminism and post-colonialist narratives. (PS – Dangarembga will be delivering a Women’s Day lecture in Johannesburg on whether feminism is divisive, unAfrican and anti-Black this coming Friday.)

Moxyland

3. Lauren Beukes: When it comes to writing about contemporary sci-fi cum fantasy cum speculative fiction, no one does it quite like Lauren Beukes. With a slew of awards behind her futuristically inclined pen, including the Arthur C. Clarke award for the perennial favourite and much-lauded Zoo City, Beukes has established herself as a South African author to be reckoned with. Her debut novel, the Cape Town-based cyberpunk Moxyland (2008) was nominated for the South African Sunday Times Fiction Prize; 2013′s time travel thriller The Shining Girls was the recipient of four prestigious South African literary awards; and – lest we forget – 2014′s Broken Monsters was commended by The Guardian for its unique adoption of the horror trope as means to explain the crazy reality we live in. And no one quite does crazy reality like Lauren Beukes…

A World of Strangers

4. Nadine Gordimer: A fearless political activist and recipient of the 1991 Nobel Prize for Literature, Nadine Gordimer garnered international recognition for her work which dealt with moral and racial issues, and a constant questioning of power relations and truth during South Africa’s apartheid regime. Gordimer’s The Late Bourgeois World, A World of Strangers, Burger’s Daughter and July’s People were either banned or placed under censorship by the apartheid government, owing to the strong anti-apartheid stance and her criticism of racial division. Gordimer is not only one of the most notable literary figures to emerge from South Africa, but also one of its most notable women.

Coconut

5. Kopano Matlwa: Addressing race, class and colonisation in modern-day Johannesburg, Kopano Matlwa had South African bibliophiles buzzing with her debut novel Coconut, published in 2007. Coconut was awarded the European Union Literary Award in 2006/07 and also won the Wole Soyinka Prize for Literature in Africa in 2010. Her second novel, Spilt Milk (2010), published to equally great acclaim, delivers an allegorical perspective on the born-free generation. Matlwa’s recent Period Pains explores social issues from the point of view of a young female protagonist, delivering an insightful and honest look at growing up in a post-1994 South Africa.

We Need New Names

6. NoViolet Bulawayo: The first black African woman and the first Zimbabwean to be shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, NoViolet Bulawayo rose to international acclaim with her debut novel We Need New Names (2013). Born Elizabeth Thsele, Bulawayo’s literary approach towards displacement, childhood, globalisation, social class and gender delivered subtle, yet powerful commentary on the existential realities of Africa. Named a ‘five under 35′ by the National Book Foundation in 2012, the recipient of the Caine Prize Award for African Writing in 2011, and a Hemingway Foundation/PEN Award winner for We Need New Names, there’s no stopping NoViolet Bulawayo.

Americanah

7. Chimamanda Adichie: No ‘must-read-African-woman-writers-list’ will be complete without mentioning this critically acclaimed author and MacArthur Genius Grant recipient whose TEDx-talk on
feminism was appropriated in Beyoncé’s “Flawless”. Mense: take note of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. As a globally renowned writer, an advocate for gender equality, and vocal supporter of the representation of African culture in the international literary sphere, Adichie is one of the most influential authors – and women – of the 21st century. Viva, Chimamanda, viva.

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Women’s Day lecture and discussion with Tsitsi Dangarembga

Zimbabwean author, filmmaker, poet and activist, Tsitsi Dangarembga, will deliver the keynote speaker and participate in an inter-generational panel discussion that will reflect on and debate Women Activism in Africa, asking the question of whether Feminism is Divisive, unAfrican and anti-Black?

An excerpt from the concept note:

Within the African continent, the history of black women’s activism and resistance is often relayed via the lens of slavery, colonialism and/or apartheid. During the struggle for national liberation on the continent, women’s issues were often dismissed and deferred as it was assumed there were other, more pressing issues such as race and national sovereignty that must be pursued.

In South Africa, the transitional period towards independence ushered in a highly progressive constitution that has been hailed as the best (at least on paper) in terms of gender equality on the continent. However, it was during this same period that women’s collective nationalist activism degenerated as it was assumed that the newly reformed policies and legislations would improve living conditions for women as a favourable, seemingly pro-woman government was put in place. The collective activism such as the one witnessed during the 1956 Women’s March and the in the trade unions were gradually lost.

However, two decades after independence we have witnessed public outrage, protests and resistance by women … Female students within the #Fallist movements at universities exposed various ills such as police brutality, misogyny and rape.

It is against this background that the 2017 International Women’s day celebration seeks to interrogate the different narratives and thoughts about black feminism. This will help steer debate and advance struggle for black women. Is feminism/black feminism a divisive tool used by white supremacists? Why are feminists feared within the black struggle against white supremacy, and what can we learn from this? What role should feminists play within the black radical movements? What forms of resistance should they consider? How should black feminists maintain a balance, if any, in their fight against multiple oppressions without compromising the struggle against white supremacy which continues to be an integral part of the post-apartheid state?

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The literature inspiring South Africa’s student protests

Memoirs of a Born FreeAmericanahDog Eat DogNervous Conditions
Where We StandUnimportanceThe Wretched of the EarthI Write What I Like

 

South Africa’s university student revolt has given new life to radical authors of previous generations as they draw on their ideas to fight fees and demand a “free‚ decolonised education”.

Among the works which are fueling the ideas behind the fees protests are the anti-colonialism writings of Frantz Fanon – originally from the Caribbean island of Martinique but who began writing scathing critiques from France in the 1950s – and Steve Biko‚ the celebrated Black Consciousness leader killed by the apartheid state in 1977.

But other writers include contemporary Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie in whose 2013 novel Americanah‚ black women’s hair serves as a symbol to illustrate the central character’s struggle against racism.

South Africa’s students are also drawing on earlier works‚ like the early 20th century work of WEB du Bois‚ a co-founder of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored Peopled in the United States and who produced influential writings railing against racism.

Tarryn de Kock‚ a researcher and postgraduate at the Centre for International Teacher Education as well as a former Politics and International Relations student at Rhodes University‚ said there was a wide range of both local and international thinkers “who have become part of the conversation around decoloniality and decolonised education”.

“There is a broad range of literature that South African students are using to inform their perspectives‚ both locally and from abroad‚ and spanning at least the last century or two‚” she said.

“Classic and contemporary authors on issues of racism and the psychosocial effects of race thinking include WEB du Bois‚ Aime Cesaire‚ Walter Rodney‚ Paul Gilroy‚ Marcus Garvey‚ Steve Biko‚ Amilcar Cabral and Frantz Fanon.

“They wrote on the experiences of black people in places such as the USA‚ the Caribbean‚ Europe and Africa.

“Garvey‚ Biko‚ Rodney and Cabral also reflected on the economic effects of colonialism on black people‚ how underdevelopment and deprivation were secured as a generational default‚ and how structures of economic‚ political‚ cultural and educational power facilitated the suppression of colonial subjects.”

De Kock said Fanon has been especially popular because of “almost prophetic discussions” about the “postcolony” in his book The Wretched of the Earth‚ where he discusses what happens after liberation and how‚ based on the structures set up under colonialism‚ particular forms of power and power struggles come to characterise the newly liberated post-colonial state.

Ncedisa Mpemnyama‚ a University of the Western Cape student in sociology and psychology‚ who spoke to TMG Digital during protests at the University of Cape Town‚ said he had found inspiration in Fanon’s The Wretched of the Earth and Biko’s I Write What I Like.

“What I have come to realise is that the cycle of poverty that is constantly perpetuated and structured on black people‚ gives us very little chance to succeed. It almost seems as though there is genocide on young blacks who have become so used to suffering.

“We need to change the conversation. We are often not taken seriously but we are indeed the future leaders of this country‚” he said.

Panashe Chigumadzi‚ activist‚ author of Sweet Medicine‚ and curator of the Abantu Book Festival‚ said that there was not always consensus about the relevance of literature in student protests.

Chigumadzi said there were often “contestations as to who has the right interpretation of what is being said‚ when you put literature into practice”.

“There’s a saying by Bob Marley, ‘He who feels it knows it’. Even as a writer I need to say that literature is great but I think you just need to walk outside and engage with what is currently happening‚” she said.

“If you just have a sense of empathy and you try to understand what black people go through‚ particularly poor black people‚ then you should understand.

“You need to be receptive to what people are saying. Students have tried to speak at nauseam and write pieces about this so a lot of it involves us looking into our hearts‚ beyond reaching for more books‚ speak to each other and I think we will get a whole lot more‚” Chigumadzi added.

Source: TMG Digital

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The New Yorker features a new story by Petina Gappah, ‘A Short History of Zaka the Zulu’

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Rotten RowThe Book of MemoryAn Elegy for Easterly

 

Alert! The New Yorker has published a new story by Petina Gappah, from her forthcoming collection Rotten Row.

She is the first Zimbabwean writer to be featured in the publication for fiction.

Gappah won the £10,000 Guardian First Book Award for her acclaimed debut book of short stories, An Elegy for Easterly in 2009. More recently, she was shortlisted for the United Kingdom’s Sunday Times EFG Short Story Award – the world’s richest prize for a single short story – and also became the first Zimbabwean author to be longlisted for the 2016 Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction, for her novel The Book of Memory.

Her new story, “A Short History of Zaka the Zulu”, is set at the College of Loyola, a Jesuit school in Zimbabwe based on a school Gappah attended. In an interview with The New Yorker fiction editor Deborah Treisman, Gappah says the idea came to her about four years ago, when she was invited to give a speech at an old school’s prizegiving.

I had not been back during term time since I left. It struck me then how incredibly young the boys were, even the oldest of them. That realisation inspired me to write a story about the closed and insular world of boarding school, and about the choices that teenagers can make in the arrogant belief that they know everything. I don’t believe in the “write what you know” school of writing; I believe in writing what I can realistically imagine. I love to write across class, across race, across sex and gender, and I wanted badly to put myself in the shoes of those boys. It would have been too easy to write it from the girls’ perspective; I wanted to push myself by imagining another.

Gappah’s new collection of short stories, Rotten Row, will be published by Faber and Faber in the UK in November. The book is named after the street in Harare where the Criminal Division of the Magistrate’s Court is based, and is made up of 20 stories about crime, from different perspectives.

“I also experiment with different approaches to storytelling,” Gappah tells The New Yorker, “I use a court judgment, an autopsy report, and an internet discussion forum, as well as other voices. I love the short story and want to master the form. I love the sentence-by-sentence, word-level attention that the short story demands, and that is its greatest pleasure.”

Read “A Short History of Zaka the Zulu”:

He was always a bit of an odd fish, Zaka the Zulu, but he was the last boy any of us expected to be accused of murder. Not a wit, a sportsman, or a clown, he was not a popular boy at our school, where he wore his school uniform every day of the week, even on Sundays. Of course, we could have admired him for his brains. In the high-achieving hothouse that was the College of Loyola, which won the Secretary’s Bell Award fifteen years in a row, we admired any boy we labelled a razor. Zaka, though, made such a song and dance about his sharpness that you’d have thought he was the only razor in the school.

He became even less popular when he was made head prefect. In a school like Loyola, where the task of keeping everyday order is entrusted to the prefects, being head can bring out the tyrant in even the nicest chap, and Zaka brought to the position an obnoxious self-importance that made him absolutely insufferable. As head prefect, he issued demerits for the slightest offenses, marking down boys who did not wear ties with their khaki shirts at Benediction, making spot checks for perishable goods in our tuck boxes and trunks, sniffing for beer on the breath of every boy who had snuck out to Donhodzo, the rural bottle store in the valley below our school, and, from the strategically placed Prefects’ Room, making forays at unexpected times to see if he could catch anyone smoking outside the library.

 
Related stories:

Author image courtesy of The New Yorker/Composite by Books LIVE

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Africa is calling: Call for entries for the 2016 Etisalat Prize for Literature – and judges announced

Call for entries for the 2016 Etisalat Prize for Literature - and judges announced

 
Etisalat has announced its call for entries for the 2016 edition of the Etisalat Prize for Literature.

The Etisalat Prize for Literature is a Pan African prize that celebrates debut African writers of published fiction. Previous winners are Zimbabwe’s NoViolet Bulawayo (2013), South Africa’s Songeziwe Mahlangu (2014) and Democratic Republic of Congo’s Fiston Mwanza Mujila (2015).

We Need New NamesPenumbraTram 83

 
The winner receives a cash prize of £15,000 (about R325,000) in addition to a fellowship at the prestigious University of East Anglia, UK, under the mentorship of Professor Giles Foden, the award-winning author of The Last King of Scotland.

The Etisalat Prize also incorporates an award for Flash Fiction; an online-based competition for non-published African writers of short stories.

Matthew Willsher, CEO of Etisalat Nigeria, said at a press briefing in Lagos, Nigeria, that the prize is designed to serve as a leading platform for the discovery and encouraging of creative writing talents as well as the celebration of literary arts by African writers.

“We are delighted to champion the cause for celebrating the richness and strength of African literature,” he said. “The Etisalat Prize for Literature is about discovering and bringing to the world stage the many creative talent Africa boasts of.

“The Etisalat Prize is about creativity, excellence, empowerment and reward; it is about celebrating our African diversity in very innovative ways through various forms of art, literature being one of them.”

Willsher added that only books by debut writers, published not later than 24 months before submission, will qualify for entry. “They must also be by registered publishing houses not less than six years as incorporated publishers with registered ISBN Number or the equivalent, and who must have published a minimum of six authors. All entries should be accompanied by seven copies of the book entered along with an acceptance of our publicity terms. A publisher may submit a maximum of three books.”

The rules and guidelines for entry are available on the Etisalat Prize website.

Willsher also announced the judging panel for the 2016 Etisalat Prize. The panel comprises Nigerian novelist and poet Helon Habila (chair), South African writer and activist Elinor Sisulu and Ivorian writer, Edwige Rene Dro.

About the judging panel

Waiting for an AngelMeasuring TimeOil on WaterThe Granta Book of the African Short StoryNigerian-born Helon Habila is a writer, poet, author and an Associate Professor of Creative Writing at George Mason University, USA. His novels include, Waiting for an Angel (2002), Measuring Time (2007), and Oil on Water (2010). He is the editor of the Granta Book of African Short Story (2011).

Habila’s novels, poems, and short stories have won many honours and awards, including the Commonwealth Prize for Best First Novel (Africa Section), the Caine Prize, the Virginia Library Foundation Prize for fiction and most recently the Windham-Campbell Prize.

Habila has been a contributing editor for the Virginia Quarterly Review since 2004, and he is a regular reviewer for The Guardian.

The Day Gogo Went to VoteWalter and Albertina SisuluElinor Sisulu is a Zimbabwean-born South Africa writer and human rights activist. Sisulu combines training in history, English literature, development studies and feminist theory from institutions in Zimbabwe, Senegal and the Netherlands.

She is the author of the award-winning children’s book The Day Gogo Went to Vote. Her biography on her parents-in-law, Walter and Albertina Sisulu: In Our Lifetime secured her the prestigious 2003 Noma Award for publishing in Africa.

Sisulu’s involvement in book promotion and literary development efforts for many years has culminated in her work with the Puku Children’s Literature Foundation. She has been a judge for the Commonwealth Writer’s Prize, the Sanlam Youth Literature Prize and the Penguin Africa Writer’s Competition.

Africa39Edwige-Renée Dro is an Ivorian writer and a translator. She is one of the 39 most promising voices under 40 from Africa, south of the Sahara as decided by the Africa39 project. She was the 2015 PEN International New Voices award judge.

Dro currently works as the director of Danbé Collection, a new imprint of l’Harmattan Editions with a focus on the promotion of Ivorian literature in Abidjan. Her short stories have been published in anthologies and literary journals.

 
 
 

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Niq Mhlongo’s top 15 books from the African Writers Series

Niq Mhlongo
Niq Mhlongo's top 15 books from the African Writers Series
AffluenzaDog Eat DogAfter TearsWay Back Home

 

Niq Mhlongo has shared his top 15 books from the legendary Heinemann African Writers Series.

Mhlongo is a known fan of the famous series, and at the Time of the Writer Festival in Durban this year he said it was a great influence on his writing.

“I grew up reading only the African Writers Series,” he said. “So when people talk about Charles Dickens, I’ve never even read him. It didn’t interest me at all. I grew up reading African writers. I read everything that was African.”

Read: ‘I’m not philosophical, I’m just a writer’ – Niq Mhlongo tells it like it is at Time of the Writer

Now Mhlongo has compiled a list of his favourites, and it’s a must see for those wishing to expand their knowledge – as Nozizwe Cynthia Jele comments: “This is the ultimate reading list!”

He writes on Facebook:

Before I studied literature at the Wits University, the only writers I was exposed to (apart from Shakespeare and Orwell) were African writers from the Heinemann African Writers Series. Here is my top 15 books that I adored from the series before I was introduced to other writers from around world.

Follow Mhlongo on Facebook here

Niq Mhlongo’s African Writers Series top 15

Some of the books are currently unavailable from the African Writers Series, and the cheapest edition has been substituted in

How many of these books have you read? Share your thoughts with us on Facebook or Twitter!

Second Class Citizen
1. Second Class Citizen by Buchi Emecheta
EAN: 9780435909918
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Houseboy
2. Houseboy by Ferdinand Oyono
EAN: 9780435905323
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Nervous Conditions
3. Nervous Conditions by Tsitsi Dangarembga
EAN: 9780954702335
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Going Down River Road
4. Going Down River Road by Meja Mwangi
EAN: 9780982012635
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The African Child
5. The African Child by Camara Laye
EAN: 9780006122593
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The Beautyful Ones are Not Yet Born
6. The Beautyful Ones are Not Yet Born by Ayi Kwei Armah
EAN: 9780435905408
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The Marabi Dance
7. The Marabi Dance by Modikwe Diboke
EAN: 9780435901240
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Detained: A Writer's Prison Diary
8. Detained: A Writer’s Prison Diary by Ngugi Wa Thiong’o
EAN: 9780435902407
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House of Hunger
9. House of Hunger by Dambudzo Marechera
EAN: 9780435895983
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Afrika My Music
10. Afrika My Music: An Autobiography 1957-1983 by Es’kia Mphahlele
EAN: 9780869752371
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Call Me Woman
11. Call Me Woman by Ellen Kuzwayo
EAN: 9780958470827
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God\'s Bits of Wood
12. God’s Bits of Wood by Sembene Ousmane
EAN: 9780435909598
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Mine Boy
13. Mine Boy by Peter Abrahams
EAN: 9780435905620
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Mhudi
14. Mhudi by Sol Plaatje
EAN: 9780143185406
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Chaka
15. Chaka by Thomas Mofolo
EAN: 9780435902292
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The best African books

The best African books

 

To celebrate Africa Day, we asked our Books LIVE community what their favourite African books were.

You can suggest contemporary books or classics, fiction or non-fiction. The list is a work in progress. If you feel something is missing, let us know on Twitter @BooksLIVESA or Facebook.com/BooksLIVESA.

Without further ado, the best African books – as chosen by you!
 
 
Do Not Go GentleDo Not Go Gentle by Futhi Ntshingila
Book homepage
EAN: 9781920590505
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Sweet MedicineSweet Medicine by Panashe Chigumadzi
EAN: 9781928337126
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MalikhanyeMalikhanye by Mxolisi Nyezwa
Book homepage
EAN: 9780958491594
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Born on a TuesdayBorn on a Tuesday by Elnathan John
EAN: 9781911115021
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Season of Crimson BlossomsSeason of Crimson Blossoms by Abubakar Adam Ibrahim
Book homepage
EAN: 9781911115007
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Easy Motion TouristEasy Motion Tourist by Leye Adenle
EAN: 9781911115069
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The Lazarus EffectThe Lazarus Effect by H J Golakai
Book homepage
EAN: 9780795703195
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Half of a Yellow Sun Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Book homepage
EAN: 9780007200283
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Say You're One of ThemSay You’re One of Them by Uwem Akpan
Book homepage
EAN: 9780349120645
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In Corner BIn Corner B by Es’kia Mphahlele
EAN: 9780143106029
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Lost and Found in JohannesburgLost and Found in Johannesburg by Mark Gevisser
Book homepage
EAN: 9781868425884
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Buy the ebook!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

We Need New NamesWe Need New Names by NoViolet Bulawayo
EAN: 9780099581888
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Portrait with KeysPortrait with Keys: Joburg and what-what by Ivan Vladislavic
Book homepage
EAN: 9781415200209
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Nervous ConditionsNervous Conditions by Tsitsi Dangarembga
EAN: 9780954702335
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Purple HibiscusPurple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Book homepage
EAN: 9780007189885
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UnimportanceUnimportance by Thando Mgqolozana
Book homepage
EAN: 9781431409525
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The ReactiveThe Reactive by Masande Ntshanga
Book homepage
EAN: 9781415207192
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African DelightsAfrican Delights by Siphiwo Mahala
Book homepage
EAN: 9781431402519
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Half of a Yellow Sun Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Book homepage
EAN: 9780007200283
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Under the Udala TreesUnder the Udala Trees by Chinelo Okparanta
Book homepage
EAN: 9781847088369
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The Book of MemoryThe Book of Memory by Petina Gappah
Book homepage
EAN: 9780571249626
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AffluenzaAffluenza by Niq Mhlongo
Book homepage
EAN: 9780795706967
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What Will People SayWhat Will People Say by Rehana Rossouw
Book homepage
EAN: 9781431420247
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The FishermenThe Fishermen by Chigozie Obioma
EAN: 9780957548862
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The Woman Next DoorThe Woman Next Door by Yewande Omotoso
EAN: 9781784740344
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EfuruEfuru by Flora Nwapa
EAN: 9780435900267
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Second Class CitizenSecond Class Citizen by Buchi Emecheta
EAN: 9780807610664
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Bellagio Center Residency Award winners include Lauren Beukes, Tsitsi Dangarembga and Victor Ehikhamenor

Bellagio Center Residency Award winners include Lauren Beukes, Tsitsi Dangarembga and Victor Ehighale Ehikhamenor

 
Alert! The Africa Centre has announced the five artists selected by The Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Center as part of its 2015 Artists In Residency Programme.

Books LIVE congratulates the three writers on the list: Lauren Beukes, Tsitsi Dangarembga and Victor Ehighale Ehikhamenor.

Dangarembga is the author of the critically acclaimed novels and The Book of Not and Nervous Conditions, but is also a filmmaker. Late last year Umuzi announced that she will be producing a film adaptation of Imran Garda’s novel The Thunder That Roars.

Victor Ehikhamenor is an award winning visual artist, writer and photographer based in Nigeria and the United States. He was the cover designer for Stranger, a recently released debut poetry collection by Sihle Ntuli.

Excuse Me!Nervous ConditionsBroken Monsters

 

The Africa Centre received a record 423 complete applications from 40 countries for its Artists In Residency programme in 2015, from South Africa, Nigeria, Kenya and Zimbabwe, as well as Algeria, Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, Madagascar, Rwanda and Sudan. 68 artists were shortlisted in December.

The Africa Centre announced the winners of its Artists In Residency Programme in February, including writers Masande Ntshanga from South Africa and Nana Oforiatta Ayim from Ghana.

But after receiving a large number of applications, across artistic disciplines, The Africa Centre also shortlisted 24 artists on behalf of the Bellagio Center.

Based on their specific interests, the following artists have been selected:

  • Lauren Beukes (author, South Africa)
  • Tsitsi Dangarembga (author and filmmaker, Zimbabwe)
  • Victor Ehighale Ehikhamenor (author and visual artist, Nigeria)
  • Yared Zeleke (filmmaker, Ethiopia)
  • Fathy Adly Salama (performing artist, Egypt)

 

The addition of these five artists mean a total to 14 have been accepted into nine different residencies around the world as part of the 2015 Artists In Residency programme.

The Africa Centre will release more information about the artists over the next couple of weeks. The call for 2016 applications will go out in the second half of the year.

 
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