The Long Journey of Poppie Nongena
Author: Elsa Joubert
Released by: Tafelberg
A timely re-introduction
There’s a general rule that one should read the book a film is based on. This year Die Swerfjare van Poppie Nongena will come alive on the big screen – making it the right time for a younger generation to read one of Afrikaans’ most profound books.
Translated in 1980 by Joubert herself, when released in 1978 as an Afrikaans book, it was highly lauded. It tells a visceral tale of a Xhosa woman who faces the effects of apartheid on family life.
It looks at the suffering of black people, but tells a story that is also deeply personal (it‘s based on the author’s friend). It starts in Upington, and follows Nongena’s displacement from her children and family as she moves to Cape Town, the Eastern Cape and back to Cape Town.
The book pays homage to remarkable people and the human spirit in an engrossing tale that you just can’t put down.
Author: Irma Venter
Released by: Human & Rousseau
Pages: 352 ISBN: 9780 7981 78310
Sense of tragic realism
It is Sunday, Christmas Eve, and there is a break-in at the Stables Estate in Pretoria East. Businessman Lafras van Zyl is left for dead and his family has disappeared without a trace. Are they dead or have they just left?
After six weeks there are still no clues, and Captain AJ Williams has been summoned to solve the case. Alex Derksen and Ranna Abramson are on the trail of 17-year-old Martina Buitendag who went missing in Yeoville.
Better known for her S series crime novels Skoenlapper, Skrapnel, Sondebok and Skarlaken, Sirkus and Sondag, author Irma Venter has received several accolades for her books and journalistic work.