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09
APR
2020

EP14: Scratching the underbelly

Don’t let Caryn Dolley fool you - the woman with the goofiest grin and the wackiest sense of humour in South African journalism has struck fear into the heart of some of the toughest gangsters who roam the underworld - and she has the death threats to prove it.

Caryn is the author of the hard-hitting book The Enforcers: Inside Cape Town's Deadly Nightclub Battles. The book exposes the war playing out in the grubby underbelly of the Mother City to dominate the security trade. The book is so good because Caryn did something that is becoming increasingly rare: boots-on-the-ground journalism!
08
APR
2020

EP13: The 7-day deadline

In just seven days Frank-N-Furter can make you a man. Well, that’s nothing because in just seven days Melinda Ferguson can make you a MANuscript.

Melinda is a best-selling author, a prized publisher and an unstoppable force. A few days ago she published Lockdown, the Corona Chronicles. Written by 17 authors, in 7 days and published in 10 … it’s surely the fastest book from concept to publication. Each chapter is a story of life in lockdown and they range from whimsical to wry to profound to inspiring to heart-breaking to hysterical. Melinda explains how she pulled off this publishing coup.
07
APR
2020

Ep12: Shaik's Spear (of the nation)

Moe Shaik’s memoir, The ANC Spy Bible, is an enthralling first-hand account of the relationship between Moe and The Nightingale - his unlikely mole in the belly of the apartheid beast.

The ANC Spy Bible is thoughtful, detailed and nuanced and provides a bird’s eye view of the mysterious world of secrets. As a young activist Moe endured beatings, torture, solitary confinement and nine months in detention - the Lockdown, he says, is like being on holiday...
06
APR
2020

EP11: A poignant memoir

Brent Meersman’s compelling memoir, A Childhood Made Up, sees the author hurtle down memory lane to his childhood in Cape Town, where he grew up in a family where storms were constantly ranging. His father had an alcohol-addiction and battled with depression. His mother suffered from schizophrenia.

His mother, Shirley Meersman aka Shirley Morris, aka Sirrom aka Churley aka Sherli, leaps out of the book’s pages. She is an absentminded artist who is contemptuous of South Africans who think Picasso is a type of cheese.

Childhood Made Up is a poignant and powerful memoir skillfully told with raw and gritty honesty, but Brent also has a light touch and there are times were you will laugh out loud. It’s a tale of pain and sorrow but it’s also a tale of recovery and redemption.
06
APR
2020

EP10: Yes, she Khan!

Raashida Khan had worked in a bank and for NGOs and as she was approaching 50 she took a giant leap of faith. She threw in the 9-to-5 towel and picked up a pen and became a full-time writer.

She has two novels, a poetry anthology and a collection of short stories under her belt. Her first novel, Mirror Cracked, tells the story of Azraa Hassim, a successful woman whose perfect life is shattered when she discovers her husband is having an affair. The book explores themes of betrayal, sexuality, homosexuality, drugs and mental health in the Muslim community.
04
APR
2020

EP9: Deliciously delightful horror

Bontle Senne loves feisty girls who kick butt and break gender stereotypes. She also loves the rich tradition of African mythology. And she loves writing. These triple loves led the celebrated author and literacy advocate to pen the four-part adventure fantasy series, the Shadow Chasers.

The Shadow Chasers are warriors who have protected their villages for hundreds of years. They are fighting against an army of shadows; monsters in a spirit realm who are trying to break into the real world - and destroy it!

It’s a deliciously delightful horror series for tweens - and even adults who enjoy escaping into a magical adventure.
03
APR
2020

EP8: All Burnt Out And Nowhere To Go?

Ten years ago Judy Klipin was an unhappy, disillusioned, chronically stressed, seriously single, semi-employed consultant. Today she's a calm, settled, happy master life coach - and the author of two important books, Recover from your Childhood: Life Lessons for the Adult Child and Recover from Burnout.

Judy has been waging a war against the scourge of burnout and with South Africa being one of the world’s most stressed countries she has had her work cut out for her.

Now the world is turned upside down and in a few short months our lives have changed forever. Stress levels have been taken to the next level. In today’s episode of Amabookabooka: The Quarantine Chronicles, Judy explains how not to burn out in the age of lockdown.
02
APR
2020

EP7: I Write, Said Fred

Fred Khumalo, according to one of his publishers, has been described as a ‘reluctant Zulu’, ‘clever black’ and an ‘equal opportunity offender’, but for Amabookabooka he is one of South Africa’s leading story tellers - who blends history and fiction into thrilling novels.

He’s written 11 books. His first, Bitches Brew, turned 15 this year and has been reprinted eight times (one fan even tattooed the cover on his arm. Fred's latest novel is The Longest March, which tells the tale of 7000 Zulu miners who walked for 10 days from Johannesburg to Ladysmith on 7th October 1899 - Fred took this historical event and added a love triangle. He then showed that he’s not 'all talk and no walk' and followed in the footsteps of the miners, making the 350km journey by foot.

He talks to us about the similarities between writing and walking, how he is keeping sane during the lockdown and the one person he would hate to be isolated with (spoiler alert: this person's name starts with an 'S' and ends with a 'teveHofmeyr').
01
APR
2020

EP6: It grabs you by the heart

Hedi Lampert is an award-winning writer, editor and the lead vocalist and keyboard player for Echo and the Merry Men. She has also grown up with an aunt who suffers from the genetic disorder Fragile X syndrome.

Hedi spent the last 15 years researching the condition, which has resulted in her just-published novel The Trouble with my Aunt. The book tells the story of 32-year-old Leah Fine who is at the centre of a complicated family saga, incorporating an intriguing medical conundrum.

It’s a gripping and heart-warming story of love, romance and the bond of family. It’s also told with dollops of humour. As author Gus Silber writes, “The Trouble with my Aunt grabs you by the heart and never lets go.”
31
MAR
2020

EP5: Memoir Queen is King

Author’s lockdown: T-17: Today’s guest on Amaboobabooka: The Quarantine Chronicles podcast is the queen of Late Night Radio and gritty memoirs.

Sara-Jayne Makwala-King is the author of Killing Karoline, which documents her journey from Karoline to Sara-Jayne back to Karoline and then finally - and triumphantly - to Sara-Jayne once again. It’s a powerful and poignant story about an affair between a black man and a white woman in apartheid South Africa, a primal wound, identity, adoption, belonging, sort of belonging, not really belonging, rejection, loss, hair trauma, the pencil test, race and racism.

The book, like Sarah-Jane herself, is smart, thoughtful and authentic. Sarah-Jane gives Amabookabooka a sneak preview of the new book she’s working on … it’s riveting and we are desperate for her to finish it so we can read it.
30
MAR
2020

EP4: I spy A Spy in Time

Author’s Lockdown: T minus 18: Today’s guest on the Amabookabooka: Quarantine Chronicles is one of the best novelists to come out of South Africa. And if you don’t believe us ask Gary Shteyngart - that’s what the Super Sad True Love Story author said of Imraan Coovadia, adding that his prose is “charming, clever and sly”.

Imraan’s latest novel, A spy in Time, features a post-apocalyptic future, time travel, secret agencies all rolled into an intriguing, entertaining and thought-provoking tale in which the course of human history hangs in the balance. If Enver Eleven, the central figure in A Spy in Time, was around in the time of Covid-19 he could have saved the world a whole lot of trouble.
29
MAR
2020

EP3: Deon Meyer's novel Fever

If crime writing had a king it would probably be Lee Child. If it had a mayor, though, it would definitely be the award-winning, best-selling Deon Meyer, who is today’s guest on Amabookabooka: The Quarantine Chronicles.

Meyer has written 13 novels which have been translated into 27 languages and published in more than 40 countries. His books are entertaining and thrilling - and will keep you on the edge of your seat. Or, as Wilbur Smith says, “Meyer grabs you by the throat and never lets go.”

Meyer's 2017 book Fever imagines the world devastated by an infectious disease that spreads rapidly and catastrophically, before preventive measures or an effective treatment can be developed. Sound familiar? Spoiler alert: This episode contains cheese.

26 episodes

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