We are super-excited to have been profiled in the 30 August 2012 edition of Finweek! Click here to check out the article…
When you think of best-selling books, the first thing that comes to mind probably isn’t textbooks. While they might not be selling in the hundreds of millions like some of the other best-selling classics out there (or, let’s be honest, have the widespread appeal), there are many textbooks that have had some pretty impressive sales over the past few decades, in all their various editions. With so many colleges using them and so many students buying them, chances are good that you’ll run across one of these top sellers at some point during your college career. If not, you may just want to check out what all the hubbub is about, and grab a copy at your school’s library to do some supplemental reading. Read more…
Published by www.onlinecolleges.net on 18/10/2011
Henry’s second novel, written, like his first, under a pen name, had done well…
Yann Martel’s astonishing new novel begins with a successful writer attempting to publish his latest book, made up of a novel and an essay. Henry plans for it to be a “flip book” that the reader can start at either end, reading the novel or the essay first, because both pieces are equally concerned with representations of the Holocaust. His aim is to give the most horrifying of tragedies “a new choice of stories,” in order that it be remembered anew and in more than one way.
But no one is sympathetic to his provocative idea. What is your book about? his editor repeatedly asks. Should it be placed in the fiction section of a bookstore or with the non-fiction books? a bookseller asks. And where will the barcode go? To them, Henry’s book is an unpublishable disaster. Faced with severe and categorical rejection, Henry gives up hope. He abandons writing, moves with his wife to a foreign city, joins a community theatre, becomes a waiter in a chocolatería. But then he receives a package containing a scene from a play, photocopies from a short story by Flaubert – about a man who hunts animals down relentlessly – and a short note: “I need your help.”
Intrigued, Henry tracks down his correspondent, and finds himself in a strange part of the city, walking past a stuffed okapi into a taxidermist’s workshop. The taxidermist – also named Henry – says he has been working on his play, A 20th-Century Shirt, for most of his life, but now he needs Henry’s help to describe his characters: the play’s protagonists are a stuffed donkey and a howler monkey named Beatrice and Virgil, respectively, and Henry’s successful book was in part about animals. He wants help to finish his play and, we may suspect, free himself from it. And though his new acquaintance is austere, abrupt and almost unearthly, Henry the writer is drawn more and more deeply into Henry the taxidermist’s uncompromising world.
The same goes for the reader. The more we read of the play within the novel, the more we find out about the lives of Beatrice and Virgil – in a series of initially funny, and then increasingly harrowing dialogues – the more troubling their story becomes. As we are drawn deeper into their disturbing moral fable, the relationship between the two faltering writers named Henry becomes more and more complex until it can only be resolved in an explosive, unexpected catastrophe.
Though Beatrice & Virgil is initially as wry and engaging as anything Yann Martel has written, this book gradually grows into something more, a shattering and ultimately transfixing work that asks searching questions about the nature of our understanding of history, the meaning of suffering and the value of art. Together it is a pioneeringly original and profoundly moving accomplishment, one that meets Kafka’s description of what a book should be: the axe for the frozen sea within us.
Pre-order your copy for only R171 from Red Pepper Books today by clicking here…
A wonderful article that has been shared with us by children’s author Fiona Ingram on using school holidays to get your kids to read…
Ideally, one or both parents will be home at that time because getting kids hooked on books needs lots of parental input! The perfect child is an absolute bookworm, devouring regular piles of books with its proud parents seeing the results in their literacy and comprehension skills at school. Sadly, this is often not the case. Either school reading lists are uninspiring, or textbooks are boring, or there’s just too much other distracting ‘stuff’ going on. The holidays are perfect for remedying this. Parents can create lots of interesting, fun projects to do with their children to get them reading.
A Holiday Reading Plan Is Essential
Do not say “We’re going to read fifty books by the time school starts.” Instead say, “There are so many fun things to do this holiday. We should make a list so we don’t miss out on anything special.” Don’t mention books at all. Make a list of things to do together.
Maximize on Trips
Day trips are great because there’s lots of reading involved to prepare for it. Anything to do with nature is the perfect topic because most kids love animals and the outdoors. Take your pick: It could be to an animal park, a bird park, the zoo, a nature reserve, a theme park, or an aquarium. For Joburg holidaymakers, one brilliant trip would be to the Cradle of Humankind site. It has loads of interactive stuff to keep children of all ages fascinated. There’s also lots of reading material that accompanies their truly magnificent displays. Monte Casino Bird Park has memorable flying displays. Enjoy the birds and then read more about them at home.
Read All About It
Depending on your outing, next stop is a visit to the library to pick out relevant books to read up on the trip. Ask your child’s opinion, or let them decide between two books. At the same time, select books for yourself and suggest your child gets their own library card. If the child does not take out a book right then, don’t worry. Whatever your holiday choices, make sure you incorporate reading wherever possible, either your before-hand reading, or else even just the information posted for example at the zoo. You the parent can encourage your kids to read to you all about the animal, or bird they’re seeing.
A follow-up to that special trip leads to more creative opportunities. This is the ideal moment to say, “It’s a pity (favourite relative) couldn’t come with us. We can still share the fun though. Wouldn’t you like to write down what you saw while I sort out the photographs?” Plan for this in advance by purchasing an attractive blank-page album so the good deed becomes a full project, involving lots of writing.
Audio and Visual Appeal
Age-appropriate audio books are just perfect for any length of time in the car. Make it an adventure, something exciting involving action to keep your child riveted. But don’t stop there. Movies are a visual treat worth exploiting. Pick a movie you know is from a book. Have a fun afternoon at the movies with popcorn, and then on the way home say, “We should get the book!” After the visual stimulation and excitement, your child will not refuse. Buy the book and the movie. Besides, you must get the book just in case the movie makers left out something very important!
Letting Your Child Choose
When next you are browsing the book stores, let your child pick their own reading material. This does not have to be ‘good books.’ Boys are great fans of games (either video or sports), so a magazine devoted to the topic is a good way to spark interest. Girls love fashion, style or the antics of their favorite celebrities. Don’t worry about ‘good literature’ for the moment. Let them read whatever excites their interest.
Write it Down
A personal holiday diary is also a way of getting your child to write down feelings, experiences, updates, and ‘stuff.’ You can make it a shared experience by writing in it as well.
These are just a few interesting and fun ways to share the experience of reading, without shoving books under your child’s nose. Using books and reading skills creatively, the savvy parent can inspire their child to find pleasure in the written word and ultimately to make their own reading choices.
Visit our web site for the latest in children’s books…click here…
Unsuccessful in their attempts to screen ZA News on national television, the producers of the satirical news show, ZA News, in collaboration with The Mail & Guardian Online, are now flighting three-minute weekly epidoses ONLINE from Tuesday to Friday, with a weekly wrap-up on Saturday. The show is performed by puppets inspired by the work of award-winning cartoonist Zapiro.
From Politicsweb: PRESS STATEMENT: SOUTH AFRICAN SATIRICAL NEWS SHOW, ZA NEWS, FINALLY TO LAUNCH
6 October 2009, Cape Town : After ten years in development the satirical news show created by Zapiro and Thierry Cassuto will begin showing on Tuesday 6th October. ZA NEWS will become one of the few South African political satires featuring content based on current South African issues and news. The topical comedy skits feature local politicians and celebrities such as Julius Malema, Jacob Zuma, Helen Zille and Nelson Mandela in latex puppet form. ZA NEWS is being headline sponsored by popular airline and ecommerce site kulula.com and hosted by Mail and Guardian Online.
“The exciting thing about the opening up of online channels is how we can entertain and build relationships with communities. Here we can develop new programmes, we can engage our audiences, and we can share perspectives in an interactive environment. kulula.com and the Mail & Guardian make perfect partners as relevant, powerful brands and leaders in building online communities,” said Thierry Cassuto , co-creator and producer / director of ZA NEWS.
Online distribution was decided upon following massive viewership (over 100 000 views) on YouTube, and other web channels, during the lengthy negotiations with broadcasters to get the show on air. ZA News has been created as short episodes that run for roughly 3 minutes each in length from Tuesday to Friday and a longer skit on Saturday which highlights the events from the week. The shows will be streamed via web video and are available at www.mg.co.za, www.zanews.co.za and www.kulula.com.
“In South Africa more happens in a week than in a year in some other places. ZA NEWS is outrageous, infuriating and as funny as the news, only more so,” comments Zapiro.
“Political satire is an essential part of a vibrant democracy and I’m amazed that with so much inspiration all around us it’s taken so long for our country to allow political satire to get on air. Where many have proved reluctant to support this type of content, we feel strongly about giving South Africans a voice and a channel for healthy, robust and engaging debate. We need to laugh together and grow together and the power of the internet means that brands such as kulula.com are in a position to fill the vacuum through sponsorship and access to our sizable online audience,” said Heidi Brauer , Group Marketing Executive Manager of kulula.com
Nick Dawes, editor for the Mail and Guardian comments, “We believe that www.mg.co.za is the logical home for ZA NEWS as it points the way forward for us a news and content company that is increasingly investing in new platforms, and reaching new audiences. It is important that the Mail and Guardian does this in a way that will continue to represent our basic editorial values – independence, fearlessness, quality and relevance. ZA NEWS ticks all of those boxes and while I find it baffling that none of the traditional broadcasters have been bold enough to take it on, I am delighted that the Mail and Guardian is able to fill the gap.”
“It’s been 10 years since Zapiro and I first conceived the idea of a satirical news show using latex puppets. We are extremely grateful to kulula.com and the Mail & Guardian for realizing and believing in our passion and funding the first season. With their support we are able to share laughter with others online, as we say at ZA NEWS, because “Here we can,” concludes Cassuto.
Puppets on the show will include:
- TIM MODISE
ZA NEWS staff:
- Created by Zapiro (Jonathan Shapiro) and Thierry Cassuto
- Co creator and Directed by Thierry Cassuto
- Writers: Ben Travato, Stephen Francis, Thierry Cassuto
- Voice artists: Aggrey Lonake, Nik Rabinowitz, Nikki Jackman
- Manipulators: Jacqueline van Meygaaden, Annelie Fourie, Tea Visagie, Kim Kerfoot, Johaan Vermaak, Anton Treurnich, Nicholas Dallas, Hansie Visagie
- Lighting cameraman: Crispian Abbott
- Production Manager: Nazeera Hartley
- Production designer: Riccardo Tugliese
- Puppets produced at CFX
- Design: AM I Collective / Ikraal
- Music: Greg @ SoundSuite