THE OTHER ME by JOY WATSON launched last night at The Electric, with The Book Lounge co-hosting

Family, friends, writers and readers gathered at The Electric last night to celebrate the launch of The Other Me by Joy Watson. Our wonderful Book Lounge co-hosted. An occasion that proved once again that oceans of love can be contained in relatively small spaces. Thank you to Joy and everyone else who made the event possible!

Joy was in conversation with the wonderful Qarnita Loxton, author of the Being Series.

Mervyn Sloman of The Book Lounge said that The Other Me is the kind of debut novel that makes you want to know immediately when the next one is coming. Joy’s fans are hoping for SOON!

A magical evening. Thank you to everyone, especially Joy, Qarnita and Mervyn! And all who attended and brought so much warmth to the occasion.

A special thank you to Karavan Press authors, Cathy Park Kelly and Melissa A. Volker, one of our fabulous designers, Monique Cleghorn, and Nazreen Essack, who took Joy’s author photograph, for attending. Monique designed The Other Me and Cathy’s memoir, Boiling a Frog Slowly.

A HIBISCUS COAST by Nick Mulgrew launched at The Book Lounge

To say that I was moved would be the understatement of the last two years. Our first post-lockdown book launch at THE BOOK LOUNGE again – after more than seven hundred loss-filled days! Fittingly, it was of Nick Mulgrew’s debut novel A Hibiscus Coast, and he was interviewed by Bongani Kona. Nick is as much of a literary institutions in his own right as is The Book Lounge. So is Bongani. Between the three of them – Mervyn (and his Book Lounge team!), Bongani and Nick – they connect most of the local literary community around us in ways that are difficult to capture in a few words. I would just like to say that I do not want to imagine a world without them. They make what I do at Karavan Press possible. They give me hope when little else does. Thank you!

And thank you to all the writers and readers who showed up at The Book Lounge tonight – I cannot tell you what it meant to me to sit among you during this evening of celebration.

Nick, thank you! You are an inspiration.

BOILING A FROG SLOWLY by Cathy Park Kelly launched at Love Books

There must be a thing like book launch envy, because I am definitely experiencing it. Boiling a Frog Slowly by Cathy Park Kelly was launched at the beautiful Love Books last night, and I really, really wish I could have been there. Cathy was in conversation with the fabulous Joburg author, Pamela Power.

This is what Pamela had to say about the launch:

During all of this, I had to prepare for the launch of Boiling a Frog SlowlyCathy Park Kelly’s Memoir published by Karavan Press about “love gone wrong”. It was FANTASTIC and more than a little emotional to be book-launching at Love Books after two years, and it was very exciting to meet Cathy in the flesh as we have only met online. The launch was packed and I saw a couple of familiar faces, including Nicola Cloete who is a former student of mine from WITS (and is now very fancy and much degreed), and her husband who is a former student of Cathy’s (nothing like meeting former students to make you feel seriously MATURE).

The book sold like hotcakes which is always lovely to see, and Cathy has organised for a book box where you can buy an extra copy of the book which then goes to organisations that deal with the survivors of GBV like Kwanele and POWA which I think is WONDERFUL. There are some copies left at Love Books, including signed copies, so hurry up if you want one for yourself or you want to contribute to the book box because I think they will sell out fast.

Authors Sue Nyathi and Gail Schimmel were both at the launch, Gail reminded me that it was exactly five years ago that we launched Delilah Now Trending at Love Books. Shocking that it’s taken me so long to get another book out (and a quarter of a book at that) but I guess it’s been a rather busy five years. Sue, who was Cathy’s editor on the anthology When Secrets Become Stories also got to meet Cathy IRL for the first time which was rather special.

The Week That Was – Go.See.Do. South Africa

Thank you, Love Books, Pamela, and all who attended (lucky yous!). And thank you, Cathy, for your brave and beautiful book.