JRB: Read an excerpt from Lester Walbrugh’s debut novel and an interview with Joy Watson

The latest issue of the Johannesburg Review of Books features an excerpt from Lester Walbrugh’s debut novel Elton Baatjies and an interview with Joy Watson.

‘A raincloud sucks all the blue from the sky’—Read an excerpt from Lester Walbrugh’s forthcoming debut novel, Elton Baatjies

‘I think that it is important for every woman to claim the “nasty” in her’—Anna Stroud interviews Joy Watson on her debut novel, The Other Me

15 – 17 September: Karavan Press authors at Blown Away by Books

THURSDAY 15 SEPTEMBER

14.00 – 15.00 
So you want to write? How to start – how to continue: three writers give insight into their writing journeys and the genres they have explored

Lester Walbrugh – Elton Baatjies & Let It Fall Where It Will
Shameez Patel – The Last Feather 
Penny Haw – The Wilderness Between Us

Moderator: SarahBelle Selig

FRIDAY 16 SEPTEMBER

9.30 – 11.30 
Writing workshop with Cathy Park Kelly and Máire Fisher (Library Hall)

14.00 – 15.00 
What we know and what we learn – about ourselves, our families, our history

Sara-Jayne Makwala King – Mad Bad Love
Erika Bornman – Mission of Malice
Cathy Park Kelly – Boiling a Frog Slowly

Moderator: Karina Szczurek

16.00 – 17.00 
The stories we choose to tell – memoir, biography and the fictions between

Colleen Higgs – My Mother My Madness
Nancy Richards – The Skipper’s Daughter
Hedi Lampert – The Trouble With My Aunt

Moderator: Cathy Park Kelly

SATURDAY 17 SEPTEMBER

16.00 – 17.00 
Personal, social, political – stories that create the fabric of our country

Sindiwe Magona – Theatre Road
In Our Own Words: Nurses on the Front Line
Nick Dall and Matthew Blackman – Spoilt Ballots

Moderator: Tracey Farren

For the full programme, click here:

BLOWN AWAY BY BOOKS

ELTON BAATJIES by Lester Walbrugh to be launched at Liberty Books

We are delighted to invite you to the launch of Lester Walbrugh‘s eagerly awaited debut novel, Elton Baatjies. Equally delighted that it is going to take place at Liberty Books in Elgin – Lester will be in conversation with Christy Weyer.

Thank you to Paul Cluver Wines for sponsoring the wine for this special occasion!

We can’t wait to share this hauntingly dark, absolutely stunning novel with Readers.

Karavan Press title: Elton Baatjies by Lester Walbrugh

In this anonymity they are able to be themselves, shadows and all, even if only for a few minutes in the day.

The Cape Peninsula carries secrets known only to the wind, the fynbos, and the creatures that live there. Six teenage boys are found raped, murdered, and dumped down the side of its mountains.  

It is two years since the discovery of the first body and Detective Junaid Japtha is no closer to cracking the case. With pressure mounting, and without any tangible evidence, he can only rely on his experience and instinct to track down the killer.  

Fifteen-year-old Tyrone May from Macassar spends his days in limbo. He has no one to talk to. No one listens. He is curious and confused about his feelings. Like most boys, he has yet to develop a sense of his own mortality. It allows for a daring that will dissipate as he grows older, but, for now, Tyrone will accept the friend request a handsome stranger sends him.   

Elton Baatjies is the newly appointed teacher at a local high school. These are his people, and he is soon embraced by the close-knit community. But he is tied to the six dead boys in ways no one could have predicted, and the secrets among them threaten to tear the sleepy mountain town apart. 

Publication date: September 2022

ISBN: 978-1-7764064-7-0

LESTER WALBRUGH is the author of the short story collection, Let It Fall Where It Will (Karavan Press, 2020). Elton Baatjies is his first novel. He lives in Grabouw.

Karavan Press at Open Book Festival, 2-4 September

JOY WATSON

FORCED TO MOVE

Dianne Du Toit Albertze, Fred Khumalo and Joy Watson speak to Bettina Wyngaard about migrating to survive.

LEGAL ACTIVISM

Sean Davison (assisted suicide), Joy Watson (GBV) and Matthew Wilhelm-Solomon (urban housing) speak to Bronwyn Pithey about using the courts as tools for transforming our society.

MOTHERS AND DAUGHTERS

Pulane Mlilo Mpondo, Yewande Omotoso and Margie Orford unpick mother-daughter relationships in the company of Joy Watson.

LESTER WALBRUGH

VALUE AND VISIBILITY

Dianne Du Toit Albertze, Chase Rhys and Lester Walbrugh discuss the politics of being seen with Haji Mohamed Dawjee.

To see the full programme, click here:

OPEN BOOK FESTIVAL 2022