I must confess that I never used to read books that were written by South African authors. I found that most of the authors tended to focus on a topic, that while relevant, has been done to death. Yep, I'm talking about Apartheid.
It's not that I don't think there's a place in bookstores for literature with a fictional focus on the Segregation era (because there is, and because it's important that we do not overlook it), but I've always thought that since we live in such an interesting country, there are more topics to explore.
Now it seems my prayers have been answered. Yay! Established authors like Deon Meyer and Wilbur Smith are selling incredibly well and hot new authors such as Cat Hellisen, SA Partridge, Lily Herne and Lili and Adeline Radloff are branching out. It’s fantastic.
In light of this, we've asked our readers to tell us about your favourite South African author. Here’s what they had to say.
Wilbur Smith emerges as a clear winner.
I love his stories. Some is fiction-based, while others are based on facts, but either way, his books always keep me on the edge of my seat.
I hated reading, until I read "When the Lion Feeds". I now love to read and have read all of his books, most of them more than once.
His stories tend to reflect believable situations that could have happened or are happening today.
Wilbur Smith's books are pure reading entertainment. I cannot put his books down.
He knows what adventure is and keeps you spellbound right up until the end of his books.
Wilbur Smith is a master storyteller – incorporating strong characters, fantastically engaging storylines and contemporary issues all into one incredible book – every single time.
Deon Meyer is another popular author our readers love.
His murder mysteries are just the best. Once I start reading one of his books it is impossible to put it down.
He's an excellent crime and thriller author with a unique South African outlook.
I love Deon Meyer's style of writing – it’s fast paced and very realistic.
Other favourites include the following:
Marita van der Vyver. Her stories are intriguing, there's never a dull moment, and there are more than enough characters or character traits that everyone can associate with something.
Zakes Mda – I can always identify with his characters.
Rayda Jacobs. I can identify with her and her books are real.
JM Coetzee because he writes compelling stuff about things that happen in SA.
Daleen Mathee: In a word, unputdownable!
Bryce Courtney. The Power of One has to be my all time favourite.
Lawrence Anthony. I love wildlife and especially elephants, and am very sorry he has written his last book.
Dan Sleigh. He tells history like it most probably happened. Not what society / the church / the state and so forth, wants you to believe.
Who are some of your favourite South African authors? Share your recommendations and tell us why you love them below.
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