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Alert! The programme for this year’s @OpenBookFest has been revealed! Click here to see it: fb.me/3EVHbDBFa

Umuzi Authors at Open Book Festival 2014 (17-21 September)

The 2014 Open Book Festival is being held in Cape Town from Wednesday 17 to Sunday 21 September. Umuzi authors to look out for at the festival include Damon Galgut, André Brink, Johan Vlok Louw, Jaco van Schalkwyk, Justin Fox, Diane Awerbuck, Imraan Coovadia, Henrietta Rose-Innes, Tony Park, Meg Vandermerwe, Andrew Salomon and Ivan Vladislavić.

Arctic SummerPhilidaKaroo DuskDie sirkel van bekende dingeDie Alibi KlubThe Alibi ClubWhoever Fears the SeaThe Ghost-Eater and Other StoriesTales of the Metric SystemNinevehDark HeartZebra CrossingTokoloshe SongThe Folly

 

Wednesday 17 September

Writing Sexuality
Venue: Fugard Studio
Price: R40
Time: 2 PM to 3 PM
Damon Galgut, Michiel Heyns and Karina Szczurek speak to Karin Schimke.

Art of the Essay
Venue: Fugard Studio
Price: R40
Time: 4 PM to 5 PM
Imraan Coovadia and Geoff Dyer talk to Hedley Twidle.

Afrikaanse Voorlesing
Venue: Fugard Studio
Price: R40
Time: 6 PM to 7 PM
Kom luister na Andre P. Brink, Karin Brynard, Henry Cloete, Johan Vlok Louw, Jaco van Schalkwyk en Ingrid Winterbach.

Writing to be Read
Venue: Fugard Annexe 2
Price: R40
Time: 6 PM to 7 PM
Andrew Brown, Justin Fox and Fiona Leonard discuss their entertaining, issue driven novels with Diane Awerbuck.

Thursday 18 September

Tribute to Nadine Gordimer
Venue: Fugard Theatre
Price: Free
Time: 2 PM to 3 PM
Imraan Coovadia, Billy Kahora and Margie Orford read from Nadine Gordimer’s work and share stories about her influence on their creative lives. Curated by Karina M Szczurek.

Landscape Architects
Venue: Fugard Annexe 1
Price: R40
Time: 4 PM to 5 PM
Kader Abdolah, Damon Galgut and Marguerite Poland discuss constructing the literary foundations of their respective novels. Chaired by Jacqui L’Ange.

Surprising Diversions
Venue: Fugard Theatre
Price: R40
Time: 6 PM to 7 PM
Rabih Alameddine, Geoff Dyer, Deon Meyer and Henrietta Rose-Innes share a passion unrelated to their work as writers. Chaired by Ben Williams.

Friday 19 September

Wilbur Smith
Venue: Fugard Theatre
Price: R40
Time: 6 PM to 7 PM
After worldwide sales of more than 120 million books, Wilbur Smith launches his latest novel, Desert God, in the company of Kevin Ritchie.

Cry the Beloved Other Country
Venue: Fugard Studio
Price: R40
Time: 6 PM to 7 PM
Distance gives you an edge. Damon Galgut and Zakes Mda talk to Alison Lowry.

Saturday 20 September

The Episodic Novel
Venue: Fugard Studio
Price: R40
Time: 2 PM
Imraan Coovadia (Tales of the Metric System) and Philip Hensher (Emperor’s Waltz) answer questions from Fourie Botha.

IPA 1: Independent Feminist Publishing – Experiences from Around the World
Venue: Fugard Annexe 2
Price: R40
Time: 2 PM to 3 PM
Meg Vandermerwe discusses the experiences of feminist publishers, Susan Hawthorne (Spinifex, Australia), Colleen Higgs (Modjaji, South Africa) and Ritu Menon (Women Unlimited, India).

Under Pressure: Writing the next one
Venue: Fugard Studio
Price: R40
Time: 4 PM to 5 PM
Thando Mgqolozana and Ivan Vladislavic talk to Alison Lowry.

Fantasy and Crime Fiction – 2 sides of the same coin?
Venue: Fugard Theatre
Price: R40
Time: 6 PM to 7 PM
Raymond E Feist, Deon Meyer and Andrew Salomon discuss why crime is at the heart of fantasy and why crime fiction often ends with fantasy. Chaired by Greg Fried.

Writer Sports – Would I lie to you?
Venue: Fugard Theatre
Price: R40
Time: 8 PM to 9 PM
6 Authors, 2 Teams. Some lies. Some truth. Can you tell the difference? Featuring Mike Carey, Imraan Coovadia, Geoff Dyer, Sarah Lotz, Niq Mhlongo & Zukiswa Wanner. Ben Williams – MC.

Sunday 21 September

Because We Can
Venue: Fugard Studio
Price: R40
Time: 12 PM to 1 PM
Geoff Dyer, Mark Gevisser and Ivan Vladislavic try to keep on topic with Bronwyn Law-Viljoen. What topic?

Cutting Edge Fiction
Venue: Fugard Studio
Price: R40
Time: 4 PM to 5 PM
Sarah Lotz, Oliver Rohe and Jaco van Schalkwyk discuss pushing fictional boundaries with Diane Awerbuck.

Book details

Deon Meyer "Extremely Proud" to be Part of Film Adaptation of The Griekwastad Murders by Jacques Steenkamp

The Griekwastad MurdersDie Griekwastad-MoordeDeon Meyer says he is “extremely proud” to be involved in the film adaptation of The Griekwastad Murders: The Crime that Shook South Africa by Jacques Steenkamp (available in Afrikaans as Die Griekwastad-Moorde: Die misdaad wat Suid-Afrika geruk het).

The film rights for the book were recently acquired by the Karoo Film Company, a company founded by Diony Kempen and Meyer, whose recent films include Die Laaste Tango, Die Ballade van Robbie de Wee and Alles Wat Mal Is (released in 2014).

The Griekwastad Murders tells the story of Don Steenkamp, a 15-year-old who killed his sister, mother and father on Good Friday in 2012. Don Steenkamp was recently sentenced to 20 years in prison, and is currently appealing his sentence.

A new, updated edition of The Griekwastad Murders will be available soon.

“We are extremely proud to be involved in this project with Jacques. His book – about a case that held the nation spellbound – is brilliant, and our goal and challenge will be have the film do justice to it,” Meyer said.

Jacques Steenkamp, who will be writing the screenplay for the planned movie, said that he is very excited to work alongside the legendary Meyer and Kempen on the project: “The story of the Griekwastad Murders has a universal theme that will resonate with its audience. It has all the elements of a Greek tragedy, but it will be based on true events. The challenge now is to adapt this story for the screen and in the process ensure that the audience finds it fresh and gripping.”

Book details

Jonny Steinberg Explains the Story Behind His New Book, A Man of Good Hope

A Man of Good HopeJonny Steinberg has explained the impetus behind his new book, A Man of Good Hope, which centres around the life of a Somali immigrant in South Africa.

Steinberg, whose appointment as WiSER professor was announced this week, says to be a Somali in South Africa means you are faced with a “Faustian choice”: be “safe and poor” in an area where xenophobia is not rife, or “prosper and risk death out in the world”.

The spaza shops that many Somalis opt to run, Steinberg says, are excellent money-making tools, but as the cash piles up, “so does the danger”.

Between 2010 and 2012, I spent several hundred hours shadowing a man called Asad Abdullahi.

On arriving in SA, he worked as a storekeeper for his uncle in New Brighton until his uncle was killed in a robbery. He then set up a business in the rural hamlet of Sterkstroom with his cousin but abandoned it when his cousin was stabbed to death by a former employee. He sold up and used the capital to establish a spaza shop in Mabopane until one afternoon armed robbers beat him with their pistols while his patrons helped themselves to his stock.

Whenever I asked Abdullahi why he kept going back for more, he grew angry with me. “If you stop thinking of the future, you are no different from a goat,” he said. “When I die, I want to have given my children a life my parents could never have known. To do that I must earn money.”

How do things look from the other side of the shop counter — to the South Africans who buy from Somalis? SA has never seen wealth accumulation Somali-style, and the sight of it is profoundly disturbing.

Book details

Video: Hidden Cape Town Author Paul Duncan Reveals His Favourite Secret Getaway

Hidden Cape TownPaul Duncan, the author of Hidden Cape Town, has revealed his favourite secret getaway from the Mother City.

In an interview with Getaway, Duncan, who is also head curator of World Design Capital 2014, says his secret hideaway involves a special hotel up the N2 highway …

Watch the video:

YouTube Preview Image

Book details

Adam Habib Believes 20 Years is not Enough Time to Get Rid of all the Problems of the Last 350 Years

During one of the launch of his new book South Africa’s Suspended Revolution, Adam Habib highlighted the high inequality levels in South Africa, in particular the stumbling blocks present in the Free State’s Health Department. He noted that these are fundamental challenges which need to tackled by provincial government leaders.

South Africa's Suspended RevolutionRewolusie op ysInguqukombuso YeNingizimu Afrika Eyabondwa YashiywaNtwa ya Boitseko e Fanyehuweng ya Afrika Borwa

 
Habib lauded post-apartheid progress but pointed out that the country still has a long way to go: “I believe 20 years is not enough time to get rid of all the problems of the last 350 years.” He spoke out harshly against the rising inequality in South Africa, saying: “If you say we were unequal and you are slowly reducing our inequality, then you are on the right path. But when we are increasing our inequality, then you have to refocus in order to be on the right path.”

The Weekly reported on the event and spoke to Habib afterwards. Read their article:

Habib’s lecture titled “Did the ANC betray the ideals of the struggle? Is there an alternative for South Africa”s future?” explored the way the former liberation movement has so far handled the national socio-economic transformation programme.

The Wits vice-chancellor also used the lecture to launch his latest book, South Africa’s Suspended Revolution: Hopes and Prospects.

The book discusses the country’s transition to democracy and its prospects for inclusive development.

Habib uses prevailing complexities such as issues of governance, political accountability, service delivery, political economy and civil society pressures to give insight into the challenges confronting South Africa in its quest to build a more democratic, equal and successful society.

OFM shared a short soundclip of Habib speaking out on inequality in South Africa:

Book details

Potgooi: Leon van Nierop gesels oor die "heilige verhaal" van Ballade vir ’n enkeling

Ballade vir ’n enkelingLeon van Nierop het in die RSG-ateljee gaan kuier om met Ilse Salzwedel te gesels oor sy jongste boek, Ballade vir ’n enkeling.

“Dit is seker die roman wat ek die meeste geniet het om te skryf en dit is ook die roman wat ek die meeste oorgeskryf het,” sê Van Nierop en gesels oor hierdie proses. Die gesoute skrywer sê: “Ballade vir ’n enkeling – die roman – is amper vir my asof ek vir die eerste keer geskryf het, nie asof ek al 29 boeke agter my het.”

Mense het hom gewaarsku, “dis ’n heilige verhaal, dis volksbesit,” en gevra waarom hy daaraan gaan “peuter” deur dit as roman te probeer vasvang. Van Nierop verduidelik dat hy 28 was toe hy die reeks geskryf het, en dat hy nou 60 is – “Daar het geweldig baie goed met my gebeur en ek het ryp geword, en die karakters het ryp geword.”

Die onderhoud begin om 15:43, na die “moderner weergawe” van die immergewilde temalied van hierdie bekende storie. Luister na die potgooi:

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