Exclusive Books celebrates Home Bru’d writers and stories

05 September 2023 - 11:12 By Helen Holyoake
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Exclusive Books celebrates Heritage Month with a selection of titles which declare 'That's Home, Bru'.
Exclusive Books celebrates Heritage Month with a selection of titles which declare 'That's Home, Bru'.
Image: Supplied

This month South Africa celebrates Heritage Day, and in keeping with that, Exclusive Books celebrates Homebru — That’s Home, Bru

We all know the way a story begins: “Once upon a time...” or “in a land far, far away...”.

Homebru ’23 takes the classical book lines and injects them with South African flavour, using quintessential South African expressions and typical African visuals of the country to create “book covers”. The result is a fresh new way to start a story, once upon a now-now, once upon a dorpie, on a plaas not so far away.

Homebru '23 takes classical book lines and injects them with Saffa flavour.
Homebru '23 takes classical book lines and injects them with Saffa flavour.
Image: Supplied

When words, our words, can reframe the unique South African experience — good, bad and the ugly — giving it a unique and familiar flavour.

Homebru is always a highlight of the Exclusive Books calendar. It gives us the opportunity to focus and celebrate homegrown written and published books, and shine the spotlight on South African writers and their writing, with no distractions, for a full month. 

The Homebru 2023 selection features 54 quintessentially South African books. It is South Africa captured in our unique words and way. History, fiction, biography, current affairs and business are all covered in the selection. Whatever bit of the South African literary landscape you would like to explore, it’s in this year’s Homebru — That’s Home, Bru.   

Many of the books are self-reflective and critical, as they should be at this challenging time in our country’s trajectory. Sindiwe Magona’s I Write the Yawning Void, Black Racist Bitch by Thandiwe Ntshinga and Nechama Brodie’s Domestic Terror all offer self-reflection, perhaps a better understanding of the issues and a way forward. 

Topical handbooks that give local, practical and inspiring advice include Handle Black Tax Like a Pro by Ndumi Hadebe and Winning the Property Game by Koketso Milosevic.

Motherhood and the role of mothers in society is under scrutiny in books like Louisa Zondo’s Dearest MaRiky, Prison Child by Felicia Goosen and The Girl Who Survived her Mother by Moshitadi Lehlomela. 

The range of fiction is deep and wide, from Lauren Beukes’ Bridge to Sunshine and Shadows by Busisekile Khumalo, to Vernon Head’s On the Wave of Gulls to Eben Venter’s Decima, available in English and Afrikaans.                     

Then biography that reads like fiction: The rollicking Daisy de Melker by Ted Botha is already flying off the shelves, and is as much about ragtime Joburg as it is about fascinating personalities.  

It’s a delight to include children’s books in this year’s selection of Homebru. The charming Zandi’s Song by Zandile Ndlovu for younger readers, strong YA options and varied non-fiction: Riaan’s Manser’s My First Wild Island Adventure (also available in Afrikaans) and Jan Braai Junior, which brings a South African icon to younger readers.  

We simply couldn’t celebrate Homebru in Heritage Month without including delicious choices in local cookery. Fatima Sydow’s Cape Malay Cooking, Karen Dudley’s Onwards and Feed my Tribe by Mmule Setati are some titles served up at the Homebru table. 

We have the power to choose our stories, stories that will serve us now, and own them. Whether it's understanding, inspiration or recipes we seek, Exclusive Books’ That’s Home, Bru is the perfect springboard.

Browse the catalogue featuring exclusive interviews and activities here.

EB Recommends for September also salutes non-fiction books that are new to the shelves including:

  • Painting a Life in Africa by Joan van Gogh.
  • Conquer Your Mountains by Mandla Moyo .
  • A Small, Stubborn Town: Life, Death and Defiance in Ukraine by Andrew Harding.
  • The Fireside Springbok by Mike Greenaway.

Article issued by Helen Holyoake on behalf of Exclusive Books


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