Pan Macmillan: five local audiobooks to listen to during lockdown

Treat your auditory senses to the following titles

03 April 2020 - 12:43
By Pan Macmillan
'Sweat, Scale, $ell' by Pavlo Phitidis.
Image: Supplied 'Sweat, Scale, $ell' by Pavlo Phitidis.

Sweat, Scale, Sell:

An astonishing 94.6% of businesses fail to sell. They close at an enormous cost to the owner, their family, their staff and the economy. Most business owners realise too late that there are only two destinations for any business: a sale or closure. You've got to build to $ell.

Sweat, Scale, $ell shares real business-building stories about how ordinary business owners took charge of their fate using the Asset of Value (TM) method. With Pavlo Phitidis, they Sweated to reshape their business to be relevant to a changing world; they built a solid foundation for Scale; and then they pressed hard to ramp up growth in preparation for $ale to create a business any buyer would want.

Phitidis draws on 25 years of direct experience in conceptualising and building businesses across four continents. Having started, built and sold 12 businesses generating more than $300m, he founded the Asset of Value (TM) method, a practical approach to build a winning business. As co-founder of Aurik, he has worked with more than 2,000 established businesses across most sectors in the economy, from family businesses to partnerships to sole business owners.

Sweat, Scale, Sell is audaciously optimistic as it shows every business owner and entrepreneur where to find growth in a no-growth economy, as well as how to make an impact and secure big returns.

'Vuvuzela Dawn' by Luke Alfred & Ian Hawkey.
Image: Supplied 'Vuvuzela Dawn' by Luke Alfred & Ian Hawkey.

Vuvuzela Dawn:

In 2019, SA celebrated 25 years of democracy and the freedom that turned the country from a political pariah to one warmly embraced by the world.

Nowhere was the welcome more visible, or more emotional, than in sport.

Vuvuzela Dawn tells the stories of that return.

From Bafana Bafana’s Africa Cup of Nations win to the fabled "438" Proteas game, we go behind the scenes of the great moments and record-breaking triumphs from 1994 to the present.

From Caster Semenya and Wayde van Niekerk to Benni McCarthy and Kevin Anderson, from World Cup rugby victories to the traumas of Kamp Staaldraad and Hansie Cronjé, Vuvuzela Dawn reveals the sporting dramas and passions that defined a quarter century.

'The GoldDiggers' by Sue Nyathi.
Image: Supplied 'The GoldDiggers' by Sue Nyathi.

The GoldDiggers:

It’s 2008 and the height of Zimbabwe’s economic demise. A group of passengers is huddled in a Toyota Quantum about to embark on a treacherous expedition to the City of Gold.

Among them is Gugulethu, who is hoping to be reconciled with her mother; Dumisani, an ambitious young man who believes he will strike it rich; Chamunorwa and Chenai, twins running from their troubled past; and Portia and Nkosi, a mother and son desperate to be reunited with a husband and father they see once a year.

They have paid a high price for the dangerous passage to what they believe is a better life; an escape from the vicious vagaries of their present life in Bulawayo. In their minds, the streets of Johannesburg are paved with gold but they will have to dig deep to get close to any gold, dirtying themselves in the process.

Told with brave honesty and bold description, the stories of the individual immigrants are simultaneously heartbreaking and heart-warming.

'The Dream House' by Craig Higginson.
Image: Supplied 'The Dream House' by Craig Higginson.

The Dream House:

A farmhouse is being reproduced a dozen times, with slight variations, throughout a valley.

Three small graves have been dug in the front garden, the middle one lying empty.

A woman in a wheelchair sorts through boxes while her husband clambers around the old demolished buildings, wondering where the animals have gone.

A young woman – called “the barren one” behind her back – dreams of love, while an ageing headmaster contemplates the end of his life.

At the entrance to the long dirt driveway, a car appears and pauses – pointed towards the house like a silver bullet, ticking with heat. So begins The Dream House, Craig Higginson’s riveting and unforgettable novel set in the Midlands of KwaZulu-Natal.

Written with dark wit, a stark poetic style and extraordinary tenderness, this is a story about the state of a nation and a deep meditation on memory, ageing, meaning, family, love and loss.

This updated edition contains new content, with Higginson exploring the background to The Dream House, his varied experiences in a farmhouse in KwaZulu-Natal and the subsequent and poignant motivations for this moving novel.

'A Year in the Wild' by James Hendry.
Image: Supplied 'A Year in the Wild' by James Hendry.

A Year in the Wild:

Angus and Hugh MacNaughton are brothers. They dislike each other ... A lot.

It all started when Hugh bit Angus at a family picnic in the summer of 1989. In a last-ditch attempt to forge a brotherly bond between the two, Mr and Mrs MacNaughton secure them jobs at an exclusive five-star game lodge. They manage to convince (bribe in the case of Angus) the siblings to work at Sasekile Private Game Lodge for a year.

A Year in the Wild: A riotous novel tells the tales of Angus and Hugh in the form of their weekly e-mails to their sister Julia back home. Their experiences include encounters with guests, animals, female staff and, often, a mix of these.

Combine: an eclectic mix of rich, over-demanding and adulterous guests, a dash of crazy bush lodge staff including two jealous brothers (one a bitterly sarcastic game ranger and the other an over-eager lodge manager) and throw in the beauty of the African bushveld. Shake well. Conflict and disaster are inevitable.