Intense personal experiences of South Africa’s brutal social system, a sense of stifled creativity and a distaste for politics made Bessie Head leave for Botswana on an exit permit at the age of 27. There, in her chosen rural ‘haven’ of Serowe, and despite a severe mental breakdown, she wrote the novels and stories that earned her international recognition as one of Africa’s most remarkable and individual writers.
A Woman Alone is a collection of autobiographical writings, sketches, and essays that covers the entire span of Bessie Head’s creative life, up to her death in 1986 at the age of 49. It reveals a woman of great sensitivity and vitality, inspired through her knowledge of suffering with “a reverence for ordinary people” and finding some healing for her own anguish in a quiet corner of Africa.₵30.00
In over forty portraits, African writers present extraordinary people from their continent: portraits of the women and men whom they admire, people who have changed and enriched life in Africa. The portraits include inventor, founders of universities, resistance fighters, musicians, environmental activists or writers. African Visionaries is a multi-faceted book, seen through African eyes, on the most impactful people of Africa.
Some of the writers contributing to the collection are: Helon Habila, Virginia Phiri, Ellen Banda-Aaku, Véronique Tadjo, Tendai Huchu, Solomon Tsehaye, Patrice Nganang and Sami Tchak.₵45.00₵45.00
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In 1962 the poet, musician, and performer Maya Angelou claimed another piece of her identity by moving to Ghana, joining a community of “Revolutionist Returnees” inspired by the promise of pan-Africanism. All God’s Children Need Walking Shoes is her lyrical and acutely perceptive exploration of what it means to be an African American on the mother continent, where color no longer matters but where American-ness keeps asserting itself in ways both puzzling and heartbreaking. As it builds on the personal narrative of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings and Gather Together in My Name, this book confirms Maya Angelou’s stature as one of the most gifted autobiographers of our time.₵50.00
Between the Lion and the Elephant, by one of Ghana’s well-known journalists and diplomats, is an account of the civil wars in Cote D’Ivoire and Sierra Leone where the author served as Ghana’s top Envoy.
A strong commitment to the welfare of the Ghanaian and African people runs throughout these fascinating memoirs, which reveal also the breadth and depth of the author’s personality. The daunting challenges facing our generation’s political leaders, as they seek to build viable states in newly emerging nations which guarantee individual freedom and create conditions of prosperity for the broad masses, have been well documented in the book. The hope must be that they will be equal to the challenges.₵70.00
**Available from mid February 2019**
Bless Me Father is the true story of an incredible South African life. Born into a violent and broken family, and growing up in a variety of institutions, Cape Town based poet and writer Mario d’Offizi tells his remarkable, often shocking and ultimately inspiring life adventure – one that spans several decades in a country undergoing radical change. From his tough days at Boys Town to wild years in the advertising world, a stint in the restaurant business and a sharp edged journalistic adventure in the DRC, d’Offizi tells his critically acclaimed story with the unfailing sensitivity and warmth of a true poet.₵70.00₵70.00
Catherine Carswell was one of the most loyal and dependable of D.H. Lawrence’s friends. When he died in 1930, with controversy over Lady Chatterley’s Lover still raging, the abuse heaped on him prompted her into writing this warm and intimate account of his life.
Savage Pilgrimage traces Lawrence’s troubled existence back to his working-class origins and gives a description of his life during the First World War after The Rainbow had been banned, when no-one would publish his work, and he became desperately poor.
This is an essential book for anyone interested in the life of one of Britain’s greatest and most controversial writers. It includes details of Lawrence’s everyday behaviour, and insights into his character, which could only have been provided by someone who was as close to him as its author.₵25.00
#1 NEW YORK TIMES, WALL STREET JOURNAL, AND BOSTON GLOBE BESTSELLER • NAMED ONE OF THE TEN BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY THE NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW • ONE OF PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA’S FAVORITE BOOKS OF THE YEAR • BILL GATES’S HOLIDAY READING LIST • FINALIST FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE’S AWARD IN AUTOBIOGRAPHY • FINALIST FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE’S JOHN LEONARD PRIZE FOR BEST FIRST BOOK • FINALIST FOR THE PEN/JEAN STEIN BOOK AWARD
NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The Washington Post • O: The Oprah Magazine • Time • NPR • Good Morning America • San Francisco Chronicle • The Guardian • The Economist • Financial Times • Newsday • New York Post • theSkimm • Refinery29 • Bloomberg • Self • Real Simple • Town & Country • Bustle • Paste • Publishers Weekly • Library Journal • LibraryReads • BookRiot • Pamela Paul, KQED • New York Public Library
An unforgettable memoir about a young girl who, kept out of school, leaves her survivalist family and goes on to earn a PhD from Cambridge University
Born to survivalists in the mountains of Idaho, Tara Westover was seventeen the first time she set foot in a classroom. Her family was so isolated from mainstream society that there was no one to ensure the children received an education, and no one to intervene when one of Tara’s older brothers became violent. When another brother got himself into college, Tara decided to try a new kind of life. Her quest for knowledge transformed her, taking her over oceans and across continents, to Harvard and to Cambridge University. Only then would she wonder if she’d traveled too far, if there was still a way home.Educated is an account of the struggle for self-invention. It is a tale of fierce family loyalty and of the grief that comes with severing the closest of ties. With the acute insight that distinguishes all great writers, Westover has crafted a universal coming-of-age story that gets to the heart of what an education is and what it offers: the perspective to see one’s life through new eyes and the will to change it.
“Beautiful and propulsive . . . Despite the singularity of [Tara Westover’s] childhood, the questions her book poses are universal: How much of ourselves should we give to those we love? And how much must we betray them to grow up?”—Vogue
“Westover has somehow managed not only to capture her unsurpassably exceptional upbringing, but to make her current situation seem not so exceptional at all, and resonant for many others.”—The New York Times Book Review₵60.00
“As for my survival for the past twenty years in England, from when I was a little over twenty, dragging four cold and dripping babies with me and pregnant with the fifth one – that is a miracle. And if for any reason you do not believe in miracles, please start believing, because keeping my head above water in this indifferent society…is a miracle.”
Buchi Emecheta’s autobiography spans the transition from a tribal childhood in the African bush to life in North London as an internationally acclaimed writer. In Head Above Water, she gives a sharply-observed account of her struggle to establish herself as a writer. Every page of this autobiography reveals her extraordinary talent, determination and wry humour.₵30.00
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An instant bestseller!
Stanley McChrystal, the retired US Army general and bestselling author of Team of Teams, profiles thirteen of history’s great leaders, including Walt Disney, Coco Chanel, and Robert E. Lee, to show that leadership is not what you think it is—and never was.
Stan McChrystal served for thirty-four years in the US Army, rising from a second lieutenant in the 82nd Airborne Division to a four-star general, in command of all American and coalition forces in Afghanistan. During those years he worked with countless leaders and pondered an ancient question: “What makes a leader great?” He came to realize that there is no simple answer.
McChrystal profiles thirteen famous leaders from a wide range of eras and fields—from corporate CEOs to politicians and revolutionaries. He uses their stories to explore how leadership works in practice and to challenge the myths that complicate our thinking about this critical topic.
With Plutarch’s Lives as his model, McChrystal looks at paired sets of leaders who followed unconventional paths to success. For instance:
– Walt Disney and Coco Chanel built empires in very different ways. Both had public personas that sharply contrasted with how they lived in private.
– Maximilien Robespierre helped shape the French Revolution in the eighteenth century; Abu Musab al-Zarqawi led the jihadist insurgency in Iraq in the twenty-first. We can draw surprising lessons from them about motivation and persuasion.
– Both Boss Tweed in nineteenth-century New York and Margaret Thatcher in twentieth-century Britain followed unlikely roads to the top of powerful institutions.
– Martin Luther and his future namesake Martin Luther King Jr., both local clergymen, emerged from modest backgrounds to lead world-changing movements.
Finally, McChrystal explores how his former hero, General Robert E. Lee, could seemingly do everything right in his military career and yet lead the Confederate Army to a devastating defeat in the service of an immoral cause.
Leaders will help you take stock of your own leadership, whether you’re part of a small team or responsible for an entire nation.₵80.00₵80.00
Binyavanga Wainaina tumbled through his middle-class Kenyan childhood out of kilter with the world around him. This world came to him as a chaos of loud and colorful sounds: the hair dryers at his mother’s beauty parlor, black mamba bicycle bells, mechanics in Nairobi, the music of Michael Jackson—all punctuated by the infectious laughter of his brother and sister, Jimmy and Ciru. He could fall in with their patterns, but it would take him a while to carve out his own.
In this vivid and compelling debut memoir, Wainaina takes us through his school days, his mother’s religious period, his failed attempt to study in South Africa as a computer programmer, a moving family reunion in Uganda, and his travels around Kenya. The landscape in front of him always claims his main attention, but he also evokes the shifting political scene that unsettles his views on family, tribe, and nationhood.
Throughout, reading is his refuge and his solace. And when, in 2002, a writing prize comes through, the door is opened for him to pursue the career that perhaps had been beckoning all along. A series of fascinating international reporting assignments follow. Finally he circles back to a Kenya in the throes of post election violence and finds he is not the only one questioning the old certainties.₵100.00
In this fascinating collection of memories, dreams, musings and all that a creative mind can conjure, Nana Dadzie Ghansah takes the reader on a very descriptive journey across time.
Nana writes across generations and zigzags us across the world from Ghana to Paris, France to Lexington, Kentucky, to Leipzig, Germany and more.
Whether we meet him sweeping his grandfather’s compound to perfection, admiring nature in the village of Besease, being a doctor in Lexington or in his trusted 1989 VW Golf, there is an energizing outburst of thought and a simultaneously sober reflection on the past, present, and future through multiple lenses.
If you’re looking to go on a thought-provoking and yet humorous journey that leaves your mind enriched, then this collection is a great pick.₵70.00
With more films to his name than years—including Alfie, Get Carter, A Bridge Too Far, The Cider House Rules, The Quiet American, and The Weatherman—a prestigious knighthood, and countless awards, Michael Caine is one of the most esteemed actors of his day. He has maintained the balance of critical respect and unswerving popularity and has established himself as a performer of the highest rank. In this in-depth biography, William Hall sketches the picture of a man who has known his share of hard times, including the poverty of his youth and the pain of discovering his long-lost brother in a psychiatric hospital. He also reveals a man who has achieved his success through a mixture of innate talent, cool charm, barbed wit, and shrewd intelligence.