Novelist finishes next leg of long walk Madiba began

30 July 2017 - 00:00 By PHILANI NOMBEMBE

Since it was published in 1994, Nelson Mandela's Long Walk to Freedom has sold 14-million copies, inspired a movie and topped lists ranging from "most inspirational" book to "most unread".
Now brace yourself for Dare Not Linger: The Presidential Years, due out in October.
Mandela wrote 10 chapters for the book, which tells the story of his presidency from 1994 to 1999. It was finished by acclaimed novelist Mandla Langa.
There is no danger of this book being withdrawn due to objections from Mandela's family: the prologue is by Mandela's widow Graça Machel and it was written in conjunction with the Nelson Mandela Foundation.Translation rights have been sold to publishers in eight countries.
Publisher Pan Macmillan said the book "draws heavily on the sequel to Long Walk to Freedom" that Mandela began writing "in the last days of his presidency but was unable to finish".
It said Langa, winner of a Commonwealth Writers' Prize in 2009, completed the undertaking using "Mandela's unfinished draft, detailed notes that Mandela made as events were unfolding and a wealth of ... unseen archival material".
The publisher said: "It tells the story of the transition from decades of apartheid rule and the challenges Mandela overcame to make his cherished vision of a liberated South Africa a reality."
Langa said it had taken him 11 months to finish what Mandela started, and it had not been an easy task.
"It was a daunting task, bearing in mind the stature of the man; it was humbling and challengingly exciting in equal measure.
"As the writing had to foreground Madiba's voice throughout, I worked on the text keeping as close as possible to the tone cadence that he would have employed were he still alive and capable of putting thought to paper."
Upcoming books
Liveright Publishing will publish 250 of Mandela's prison letters - written between 1962 and 1990 - to coincide with the centenary of his birth in July next year. Most were written to his then wife, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, and "have never been seen by the public".
Professor Xolela Mangcu is "working on a new Mandela book", according to the Nelson Mandela Foundation.

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