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The Love Song Of Andre P. Brink is the first biography of this major South African novelist who, during his lifetime, was published in over 30 languages and ranked with the likes of Gabriel García Márquez, Peter Carey and Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn.
Leon de Kock’s eagerly awaited account of Brink’s life is richly informed by a previously unavailable literary treasure: the dissident Afrikaner’s hoard of journal-writing, a veritable chronicle that was 54 years in the making. In this massive new biographical source – running to a million words – Brink does not spare himself, or anyone else for that matter, as he narrates the ups and downs of his five marriages and his compulsive affairs with a great number of women. These are precisely the topics that the rebel in both politics and sex skated over in his memoir, A Fork in the Road.
De Kock’s biographical study of the author who came close to winning the Nobel Prize for Literature not only synthesises the journals but also subjects them to searching critical analysis. In addition, the biographer measures the journals against additional sources, both scholarly and otherwise, among them the testimony of Brink’s friends, family, wives and lovers.
The Love Song Of Andre P. Brink subjects Brink’s literary legacy to a bracing scholarly re-evaluation, making this major new biography a crucial addition to scholarship on Brink
In 1957 emigreer die negejarige Henk van Woerden vanaf Nederland met sy gesin na Kaapstad – leertas in die hand, mussie oor die ore, serp om die nek, glasoog in die oogkas. Eers veertig jaar later ontdek hy wat die rede was vir hierdie vertrek na Suid-Afrika: Sy pa was ’n kollaborateur in die Tweede Wêreldoorlog. Die emigrasie is die begin van ’n lewe as buitestaander en vorm later die goue draad in sy skilderye en literêre werk.
Koning Eenoog is ’n boeiende biografie van die ewig soekende emigrant Henk van Woerden (1947–2005), ’n skrywer wat nie net ’n bekroonde oeuvre agtergelaat het nie (Een mond vol glas – Alan Paton Award en die Frans Kellendonk-prys, Ultramarijn – Gouden Uil en Inktaap) maar ook die Nederlandse literatuur oor Suid-Afrika verander het.
Award winning novelist Karin Cronje has established herself as a fearless writer unafraid to expose issues usually considered off limits. There Goes English Teacher, which spans three years of adventures and misadventures as an English teacher in a small Korean village and later at a university, continues her pursuit of truth. This unusually honest memoir reflects amongst others, the nature of identity and the loss of it; sexuality; belief; ageing; displacement; belonging; and nationhood. Karin Cronje has a real talent for tongue-in-cheek observations of herself and her world. Her accounts of her own confusion and incomprehension as she navigates the collision of two cultures worlds apart are told with a mix of irony, pathos and humor. Yet underneath the lighthearted narration this intimate account shows how a disruption of the familiar can lead to fundamental change.
What further sets this memoir apart is that it is as close to first-hand as a reader may possibly ever get. Karin Cronje seldom allows us out of her head; she doesn’t give us anything like a travel writer’s perspective, a dispassionate description of landscape or exterior view. We inhabit this foreign place exactly as she did. Whilst in Korea, she completed a novel, which won the Jan Rabie/Rapport prize. She takes us with her through the various stages of writing it and we experience her internal processes that lead to an end she was unable to predict. Her return to South Africa poses unforeseen troubles. We are right there with her as she makes one disastrous and scandalous decision after another.
There Goes English Teacher is ultimately a celebration of the gifts the world has to offer while it entertains with a sometimes funny, sometimes sad, sometimes acerbic and ironic, but always humane voice. There are few South African memoirs that dig as deeply into what it means to be fully human. It is a compelling, moving story, unusually told and one that will not only linger long after finishing the book but will demand a second slower read to savour the writing.
Although Olga Kirsch’s is the only Jewish voice in Afrikaans poetry, it is scarcely known among members of the South African Jewish community. Olga Kirsch was, after Elisabeth Eybers, only the second woman to publish a collection of poetry in Afrikaans.
The aims of this biography are to reverse this slide into obscurity and to show why her work is important not only in South Africa but also in Israel.
It does not only investigate Kirsch’s role as Afrikaans Jewish poet but also examines her as an example of a cross-cultural, multi-lingual immigrant poet. As such some of her English and Hebrew poetry are included in this work.
The first ever memoirs from the Number One global bestselling adventure author.
Wilbur Smith has lived an incredible life of adventure, and now he shares the extraordinary true stories that have inspired his fiction. From being attacked by lions to close encounters with deadly reef sharks, from getting lost in the African bush without water to crawling the precarious tunnels of gold mines, from marlin fishing with Lee Marvin to near death from crash-landing a Cessna airplane, from brutal school days to redemption through writing and falling in love, Wilbur Smith tells us the intimate stories of his life that have been the raw material for his fiction.
Always candid, sometimes hilarious, and never less than thrillingly entertaining, On Leopard Rock is testament to a writer whose life is as rich and eventful as his novels are compellingly unputdownable.
Ingrid Jonker, begaafde jong digter, loop op 19 Julie 1965 die see in by Drieankerbaai en verdrink. Sy laat haar familie en vriende agter met meer vrae as antwoorde. Gedurende die afgelope 50 jaar het sy ’n ikoon van die Afrikaanse en Suid- Afrikaanse letterkunde geword. In so ’n mate, dat haar lewe en veral haar dood soms haar werk en die belangrike bydrae wat sy tot die literêre beweging van die Sestigers gemaak het, oorskadu.
Haar politieke sieninge, soos uitgedruk in haar poësie en haar passie en die droefheid van haar onstuimige liefdesverhoudings met onder andere Jack Cope en André P. Brink het al tot baie besprekings gelei. Sy het weer onder die publieke oog gekom toe oudpresident Nelson Mandela in sy inhuldigingsrede in 1994 in die Parlement een van haar gedigte aangehaal het. Hy het haar gedig: “Die Kind” voorgelees en gesê: “Sy was beide ’n digter en ’n Suid-Afrikaner.”
Sedert haar dood is daar vele bespiegelings oor haar lewe en tragiese einde. Van dié vrae word beantwoord in hierdie eerste omvattende biografie. Petrovna Metelerkamp doen al jare navorsing oor Jonker. Sy neem die leser saam deur Ingrid se grootwordjare, digterslewe, liefdesverhoudings en die laaste paar jaar van haar lewe.
Metelerkamp bring nuwe inligting aan die lig wat sy neem uit onbekende nuwe briewe en dagboekinskrywings, o.m. uit die dagboeke van Jack Cope. Talle nuwe onderhoude met mense wat Jonker geken het, word in die biografie opgeneem. Sy weerlê ook die beeld van Jonker as ’n ongebalanseerde kunstenaar wat haar houvas op die werklikheid verloor het in hierdie toeganklike biografie oor een van Suid-Afrika se aangrypendste kunstenaars.
Ter viering van Dolf van Niekerk se negentigste verjaarsdag verskyn hier ’n versameling filosofiese, bepeinsende en besinnende essays uit die pen van een van Afrikaans se meesterskrywers.
Vanaf sy vroegste gewaarwordinge tot sy kennismaking met groot filosowe soos Nietzsche, Kant en Hegel op universiteit en in sy daaglikse handel en wandel daarna: altyd maar bly die bewustheid van ’n onsigbare “iets” by hierdie aristokratiese gees – en ’n soeke na ’n beter verstaan van dít wat “die sterretyd en die menstyd aan mekaar verbind”.
In 48 essays wat die biografiese tydperk tussen ongeveer sy vyfde en twintigste lewensjaar dek, skryf ’n deurleefde, wyse Van Niekerk oor sy vroegste herinnerings aan sy geboortedorp, sy gesin en sy helderste herinnerings aan die plekke en mense wat hom gevorm het tot die mens wat hy geword het. Want, soos wat hy in die verhaal “Die skinkbord” skryf: Jy kan net wees wie jy is, en jy is wat jy word.
Fingers crossed that Marian has a new novel out soon but until then why not laugh your socks off with this hilarious collection of tales, observations and flights of fancy from the funniest woman in print.
Welcome to the magnificent Making It Up As I Go Along - aka the World According to Marian Keyes(TM) - A bold and brilliant collection of Marian's hilarious and often heartfelt observations on modern life, love and everything in between. From a guide to breaking up with your hairdresser to entering the fifties-zone, the joys of her nail varnish museum to singing her way through insomnia, Marian will have you laughing with delight and gasping with recognition throughout - because at the end of the day, each and every one of us is clearly making it up as we go along.
Jack Reacher is only the second of Jim Grant's great fictional characters: the first is Lee Child himself. Heather Martin's biography tells the story of all three. Lee Child is the enigmatic powerhouse behind the bestselling Jack Reacher novels. With millions of devoted fans across the globe, and over a hundred million copies of his books sold in more than forty languages, he is that rarity, a writer who is lauded by critics and revered by readers. And yet curiously little has been written about the man himself. The Reacher Guy is a compelling and authoritative portrait of the artist as a young man, refracted through the life of his fictional avatar, Jack Reacher. Through parallels drawn between Child and his literary creation, it tells the story of how a boy from Birmingham with a ferocious appetite for reading grew up to become a high-flying TV executive, before coming full circle and establishing himself as the strongest brand in publishing. Heather Martin explores Child's lifelong fascination with America, and shows how the Reacher novels fed and fuelled this obsession, shedding light on the opaque process of publishing a novel along the way. Drawing on her conversations and correspondence with Child over a number of years, as well as interviews with his friends, teachers and colleagues, she forensically pieces together his life, traversing back through the generations to Northern Ireland and County Durham, and following the trajectory of his extraordinary career via New York and Hollywood until the climactic moment when, in 2020, having written a continuous series of twenty-four books, he finally breaks free of his fictional creation.
Jeoffry was a real cat who lived 250 years ago, confined to an asylum with Christopher Smart, one of the most visionary poets of the age. In exchange for love and companionship, Smart rewarded Jeoffry with the greatest tribute to a feline ever written. Prize-winning biographer Oliver Soden combines meticulous research with passages of dazzling invention to recount the life of the cat praised as 'a mixture of gravity and waggery'. The narrative roams from the theatres and bordellos of Covent Garden to the cell where Smart was imprisoned for mania. At once whimsical and profound, witty and deeply moving, Soden's biography plays with the genre like a cat with a toy. It tells the story of a poet and a poem, while setting Jeoffry's life and adventures against the roaring backdrop of eighteenth-century London.
Andre P Brink En Die Spel Van Liefde is die heel eerste biografie van ’n Suid-Afrikaanse skrywer wat gedurende sy leeftyd in dieselfde asem as Gabriel García Márquez, Peter Carey en Aleksandr Soltzjenitsen genoem is, en wie se romans in meer as 30 tale vertaal is.
In Leon de Kock se langverwagte biografie word Brink se persoonlike dagboeke en joernale as die belangrikste bronmateriaal hanteer. Brink het meer as 50 jaar lank sy ervarings en gedagtes pligsgetrou opgeteken: hierdie notaboeke, waartoe De Kock eksklusief toegang verkry het, word nou vir die eerste maal bekend gemaak.
Die spel van liefde is ’n omvangryke biografie wat die leser ’n openhartige, onverbloemde blik gee op Brink se gedagtes en gevoelens – oor homself én ander. Brink beskryf die hoogte- en laagtepunte van sy vyf huwelike asook sy verskeie verhoudings met ’n groot aantal vroue – ’n onderwerp wat hy in sy memoir, ’n Vurk in die pad, maar slegs vlugtig bespreek. Gedurende sy leeftyd het Brink hom nie net teen die politieke bestel verset nie, maar veral ook teen tradisionele seksuele sedes.
In hierdie biografie van ’n skrywer aan wie die Nobelprys vir letterkunde byna toegeken is, bekyk De Kock Brink se persoonlike, outobiografiese aantekeninge vanuit ’n kritiese, literêre oogpunt. Daarmee saam vergelyk hy die dagboeke met akademiese en ander, alledaagse bronne, waaronder getuienisse deur Brink se vriende, familie, eggenote en minnaresse. Die spel van liefde is ’n unieke, belangrike toevoeging tot die Suid-Afrikaanse lettere, maar veral ook tot navorsing oor Brink se lewe en skryfwerk.
A groundbreaking biography of Milton's formative years that provides a new account of the poet's political radicalization John Milton (1608-1674) has a unique claim on literary and intellectual history as the author of both Paradise Lost, the greatest narrative poem in English, and prose defences of the execution of Charles I that influenced the French and American revolutions. Tracing Milton's literary, intellectual, and political development with unprecedented depth and understanding, Poet of Revolution is an unmatched biographical account of the formation of the mind that would go on to create Paradise Lost-but would first justify the killing of a king. Biographers of Milton have always struggled to explain how the young poet became a notorious defender of regicide and other radical ideas such as freedom of the press, religious toleration, and republicanism. In this groundbreaking intellectual biography of Milton's formative years, Nicholas McDowell draws on recent archival discoveries to reconcile at last the poet and polemicist. He charts Milton's development from his earliest days as a London schoolboy, through his university life and travels in Italy, to his emergence as a public writer during the English Civil War. At the same time, McDowell presents fresh, richly contextual readings of Milton's best-known works from this period, including the "Nativity Ode," "L'Allegro" and "Il Penseroso," Comus, and "Lycidas." Challenging biographers who claim that Milton was always a secret radical, Poet of Revolution shows how the events that provoked civil war in England combined with Milton's astonishing programme of self-education to instil the beliefs that would shape not only his political prose but also his later epic masterpiece.
Die eerste uitgawe van Die keer toe ek my naam vergeet het verskyn in 1995, vyf jaar nadat die skrywer F.A. Venter ’n beroerte gekry het. In hierdie outobiografiese vertelling dokumenteer hy die pynlike en stadige proses van herstel: hy moet weer leer loop, leer praat, leer skryf. Dit is verder ’n verhaal oor die verhouding tussen Venter en sy geliefde vrou, Stella. In Die Afrikaanse literatuur 1652–2004 beskryf J.C. Kannemeyer Die keer toe ek my naam vergeet het as een van Venter se “belangrikste bydraes tot die Afrikaanse prosa”: “Die aangrypende verhaal van ouderdom en lyding, maar ook van ’n mooi huwelik en toegewyde liefde, is terselfdertyd ’n getuienis van die onblusbare gees van die skeppende mens wat, ten spyte van alle teenspoed, kan voortgaan met die werk waarvoor hy hier op aarde geplaas is.” Op ’n eerlike en roerende wyse, en met ’n tikkie humor, raak Venter die universele, tydlose temas van siekte, oudword en die dood aan. Uiteindelik is dit ’n verhaal van aanvaarding: “Ek het baie verloor – die kosbaarste. Maar ek het ook geleer om te verduur. Te aanvaar. Tevrede te wees. Anders sou dit ondraaglik wees.”
Sol Plaatje is celebrated as one of South Africa’s most accomplished political and literary figures. A pioneer in the history of the black press, editor of several newspapers, he was one of the founders of the African National Congress in 1912, led its campaign against the notorious Natives Land Act of 1913, and twice travelled overseas to represent the interests of his people. He wrote a number of books, including – in English – Native Life in South Africa (1916), a powerful denunciation of the Land Act and the policies that led to it, and a pioneering novel, Mhudi (1930). Years after his death his diary of the siege of Mafeking was retrieved and published, providing a unique view of one of the best known episodes of the South African War of 1899–1902. At the same time Plaatje was a proud Morolong, fascinated by his people’s history. He was dedicated to Setswana, and set out to preserve its traditions and oral forms so as to create a written literature. He translated a number of Shakespeare’s plays into Setswana, the first in any African language, collected proverbs and stories, and even worked on a new dictionary. He fought long battles with those who thought they knew better over the particular form its orthography should take. This book tells the story of Plaatje’s remarkable life, setting it in the context of the changes that overtook South Africa during his lifetime, and the huge obstacles he had to overcome. It draws upon extensive new research in archives in southern Africa, Europe and the US, as well as an expanding scholarship on Plaatje and his writings. This biography sheds new light not only on Plaatje’s struggles and achievements but upon his personal life and his relationships with his wife and family, friends and supporters. It pays special attention to his formative years, looking to his roots in chiefly societies, his education and upbringing on a German-run mission, and his exposure to the legal and political ideas of the nineteenth-century Cape Colony as key factors in inspiring and sustaining a life of more or less ceaseless endeavour.
Travel back in time and share the experience of everyday thoughts and great moments in history in this fascinating compilation of diaries through the ages. Great Diaries traces the history of the diary from ancient times to the present day, bringing together more than 80 historical and literary diaries, artists' sketchbooks, explorers' journals, and scientists' notebooks. Discover what it was like to build a pyramid, sail the seas with Magellan, travel into the heart of Africa, or serve on the Western Front. Find out how writers and artists planned their masterpieces, and how scientists developed their groundbreaking theories. Great Diaries takes you into the pages of the world's greatest diaries and notebooks, including those of Samuel Pepys, Charles Darwin, Henry-David Thoreau, the Goncourt brothers, Virginia Woolf, and Anne Frank, and shows you what they looked like. Stunning images of the original notebooks and manuscripts are complemented by key extracts and close-ups of important details. Feature boxes provide additional biographical information and set the works in their cultural and historical context. Essential reading for everyone who is passionate about history and literature, Great Diaries provides an intimate insight into the lives and thoughts of some of the most interesting people of the last 2,000 years.
From New York Times bestselling author Naomi Wolf, Outrages explores the history of state-sponsored censorship and violations of personal freedoms through the inspiring, forgotten history of one writer's refusal to stay silenced. Newly updated, first North American edition--a paperback original In 1857, Britain codified a new civil divorce law and passed a severe new obscenity law. An 1861 Act of Parliament streamlined the harsh criminalization of sodomy. These and other laws enshrined modern notions of state censorship and validated state intrusion into people's private lives. In 1861, John Addington Symonds, a twenty-one-year-old student at Oxford who already knew he loved and was attracted to men, hastily wrote out a seeming renunciation of the long love poem he'd written to another young man. Outrages chronicles the struggle and eventual triumph of Symonds-who would became a poet, biographer, and critic-at a time in British history when even private letters that could be interpreted as homoerotic could be used as evidence in trials leading to harsh sentences under British law. Drawing on the work of a range of scholars of censorship and of LGBTQ+ legal history, Wolf depicts how state censorship, and state prosecution of same-sex sexuality, played out-decades before the infamous trial of Oscar Wilde-shadowing the lives of people who risked in new ways scrutiny by the criminal justice system. She shows how legal persecutions of writers, and of men who loved men affected Symonds and his contemporaries, including Christina and Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Algernon Charles Swinburne, Walter Pater, and the painter Simeon Solomon. All the while, Walt Whitman's Leaves of Grass was illicitly crossing the Atlantic and finding its way into the hands of readers who reveled in the American poet's celebration of freedom, democracy, and unfettered love. Inspired by Whitman, and despite terrible dangers he faced in doing so, Symonds kept trying, stubbornly, to find a way to express his message-that love and sex between men were not "morbid" and deviant, but natural and even ennobling. He persisted in various genres his entire life. He wrote a strikingly honest secret memoir-which he embargoed for a generation after his death-enclosing keys to a code that the author had used to embed hidden messages in his published work. He wrote the essay A Problem in Modern Ethics that was secretly shared in his lifetime and would become foundational to our modern understanding of human sexual orientation and of LGBTQ+ legal rights. This essay is now rightfully understood as one of the first gay rights manifestos in the English language. Naomi Wolf's Outrages is a critically important book, not just for its role in helping to bring to new audiences the story of an oft-forgotten pioneer of LGBTQ+ rights who could not legally fully tell his own story in his lifetime. It is also critically important for what the book has to say about the vital and often courageous roles of publishers, booksellers, and freedom of speech in an era of growing calls for censorship and ever-escalating state violations of privacy. With Outrages, Wolf brings us the inspiring story of one man's refusal to be silenced, and his belief in a future in which everyone would have the freedom to love and to speak without fear.
Slot van die dag: Gedagtes is die skrywer se mymeringe oor ouderdom en die einde van die lewe, saam met verspreide herinnerings van ’n algemene aard, om ’n ryk geskakeerde beeld te verskaf van ’n skrywerslewe van byna tagtig jaar. Die reeks outobiografiese boeke wat met ’n Duitser aan die Kaap, Merksteen en Die laaste Afrikaanse boek begin het, word hiermee afgesluit. Dit is 'n baie persoonlike boek oor ouderdom, die skryfproses en selfbeskikking met kommentaar op oud word en wees, met inbegrip van praktiese wenke, en heelwat inligting oor die moontlike en waarskynlike einde van die lewe. Die element van afskeid en gelatenheid is deurlopend. Die ouderdom is teenswoordig die vernaamste onderwerp van sy oorpeinsing, en die vernaamste element in sy daagliks ervarings. Die verwysings en aanhalings is treffend en spreek van iemand wat sy leeswereld ook sy leefwereld maak. Ten slotte verduidelik die skrywer sy bevrydende besluit oor selfdood.
The definitive biography of Sylvia Pankhurst, a woman ahead of her times - political rebel, human rights champion and radical feminist. Born into one Britain's most famous activist families, Sylvia Pankhurst was a natural rebel; a talented artist, prolific writer and newspaper editor. A free spirit and radical visionary, history placed her in the shadow of her famous mother, Emmeline, and elder sister, Christabel. Yet Sylvia Pankhurst was the most revolutionary of them all. Sylvia found her voice fighting militantly for votes for women. Her commitment to equality caused her to serve multiple sentences in Holloway prison - where she was tortured. The vote was just the beginning of her lifelong defence of human rights, from her early warnings of the rise of fascism in Europe, to her campaigning against racism and championing of the liberation struggles in Africa and India. Sylvia's adventures in America, Soviet Russia, Scandinavia, Europe and East Africa made her a true internationalist. She was one of the great minds of the modern era, engaging with political giants, including Churchill, Lenin, Rosa Luxemburg, George Bernard Shaw, W.E.B. Du Bois and Haile Selassie. Her intimate life was no less controversial. The rupture between Sylvia, Emmeline and Christabel became worldwide news. Her love affair with the married Keir Hardie was one of the great political romances of the age, and she never married her life partner Silvio Corio, with whom she had a son at the age of forty-five. Acclaimed biographer Rachel Holmes interweaves the personal and political to reveal Sylvia Pankhurst as never before. This major new biography celebrates a life in resistance, painting a compelling portrait of one of the greatest unsung political figures of the twentieth century.
An acclaimed biography that recreates the cosmopolitan world in which a wine merchant's son became one of the most celebrated of all English writers Geoffrey Chaucer is often called the father of English literature, but this acclaimed biography reveals him as a great European writer and thinker. Uncovering important new information about Chaucer's travels, private life, and the circulation of his writings, Marion Turner reconstructs in unprecedented detail the cosmopolitan world of Chaucer's adventurous life, focusing on the places and spaces that fired his imagination. From the wharves of London to the frescoed chapels of Florence, the book recounts Chaucer's experiences as a prisoner of war in France, as a father visiting his daughter's nunnery, as a member of a chaotic Parliament, and as a diplomat in Milan. At the same time, the book offers a comprehensive exploration of Chaucer's writings. The result is a landmark biography and a fresh account of the extraordinary story of how a wine merchant's son became the poet of The Canterbury Tales.
Flannery O'Connor spent most of her life in Georgia. Most of O'Connor's fiction is also set in the state, in locales rich in symbolism and the ambience of southern rural and small-town life. Filled with contemporary and historical photos, this guide introduces O'Connor's readers to the places where the great writer lived and worked--places whose features and details sometimes found their way into her fiction.
The guide describes such places as O'Connor's childhood home in Savannah; the Governor's Mansion, Cline House, and Central State Hospital in Milledgeville; and the family farm, Andalusia. Numerous facts about O'Connor and the people closest to her are woven into the site descriptions, as are critical observations about her Catholicism, her acute sense of character and place, and her fierce sense of humor.
Features include: More than fifty full-color contemporary photographs and numerous black-and-white historical imagesAn overview and chronology of O'Connor's life and legacyMaps to sites in Savannah, Milledgeville, and the house and grounds at AndalusiaDiscussions of O'Connor's life and writingsListing of O'Connor's works and suggestions for further reading
All author royalties from sales of the guide will be donated to the Flannery O'Connor-Andalusia Foundation.
Through the novels of England's foremost woman writer, we explore the Regency world at the time of the Napoleonic wars, its manners, fashion and style, pastimes and entertainments. Jane Austen - loved now by a huge audience, thanks partly to modern-day TV and film - led a quiet, uneventful life - yet lived amid great events, in a society viewed with remarkable wit and perception. Here are the places Austen knew, visited and featured in her books: the settings for balls, country strolls, holiday tours, carriage drives, walks, picnics, rendezvous and revelations. The guide includes evocative quotations, surprising facts and places to visit.
Die geliefde en gevierde kortverhaalskrywer Hennie Aucamp is op 21 Maart 2014, slegs twee maande na sy 80ste verjaardag oorlede. In hierdie herinneringsboek word verskillende fasette van sy lewe deur familie, vriende en medeskrywers belig. Onder die familielede wat bydraes tot die boek gelewer het, is sy suster Rina wat herinneringe aan hulle kinderjare op die familieplaas Rus-mijn-ziel opdiep en sy neef Inus Aucamp wat meer vertel van die vestiging van die Aucamp-familie in die Stormberge. Die skryfster Margaret Bakkes, wat ook sy kleinniggie is en op 'n buurplaas grootgeword het, vertel hoe sy en Hennie reeds as kinders teenoor mekaar bely het dat hulle wil skryf. Daar is ook bydraes deur Marius en Christiaan Bakkes, wat oor Hennie se belangstelling in die natuur. Daar is besondere opstelle deur medeskrywers Lina Spies, Aletta Lubbe (gebore Aucamp), Danie Botha en Abraham de Vries, terwyl Daniel Hugo en Joan Hambidge gedigte opgedra aan Hennie gelewer het. Die radiopersoonlikhede Monica Breed en Margot Luyt skryf oor Hennie se ruimhartigheid en sy vriend Nico Loubser oor Hennie se laaste dae. Foto’s van Philip de Vos en Marius Bakkes skep 'n visuele beeld van die woordman Aucamp.
An intimate portrait of Patrick O'Brian, written by his stepson Nikolai Tolstoy. Patrick O'Brian was one of the greatest British novelists of the twentieth century, securing his place in literary history with the bestselling Aubrey-Maturin series, books that have sold millions of copies worldwide and been hailed as the best historical fiction of all time. An exquisite novelist, translator and biographer, O'Brian moved in 1949 to Collioure in the south of France, where he led a secluded life with his wife Mary and wrote all his major works. The twenty books that make up the beloved Aubrey-Maturin series earned O'Brian the epithet 'Jane Austen at sea' for their authentic depiction of Nelson's navy, and the relationship between Captain Jack Aubrey and his friend and ship's surgeon Stephen Maturin. Outside his triumphant popularity in fiction, O'Brian also wrote erudite biographies of both Pablo Picasso and Joseph Banks, as well as publishing translations of Simone de Beauvoir and Henri Charriere. In A Very Private Life, Nikolai Tolstoy draws upon his close relationship with his stepfather, as well as his notebooks, letters and photographs, to capture a highly researched but intimate account of those fifty years in Collioure that were the richest of O'Brian's writing life. With warm and honest reflection, this biography gives insight into the genius of the little-known man behind the much-loved writing. Tolstoy also tells how, through a sad irony, unjust attacks on O'Brian's private life destroyed much of the happiness he had gained from his achievement just as his literary career attained greater acclaim.
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