The Best Of Is It Just Me Or Is Everything Shit? by Steve Lowe,Alan McArthur Summary
An encylopedic attack on modern culture and the standard reference work for everyone who believes everything is shit. Which it is. This book brings together the very best of Is It Just Me Or Is Everything Shit? Volumes 1 and 2. Anyone who enjoyed the first two volumes will like this book even more. Equally, anyone who didn't like those books will actually find this one hilarious and informative.
Should I Stay Or Should I Go? by Tim Richman Summary
Most South Africans with the means to pack up and leave have, at some point, thought about living elsewhere (even if it’s just to scoff at the idea), and it is estimated that more than one million South Africans have emigrated since the early 1990s, on top of the many thousands who left in the turbulent 1970s and 1980s. For those looking for guidance, these 15 essays by South Africans—both literary figures and everyday people—provide a broad overview of the emigration debate as well as its opposite, the new arrivals to South Africa. Other helpful information includes comparisons of the 14 most popular cities for South African emigrants, a discussion of the stresses of emigration, and further reading on the topic.
Complete Kak! by Tim Richman,Grant Schreiber Summary
An all-encompassing commentary, this collection is the final word on everything that aggravates and annoys South Africans everywhere. Through humorous and sardonic writing, it discusses a variety of topics, from the African National Congress and Jacob Zuma to Afrikaans music and South African drivers. While highlighting the vexations, this expanded edition offers an insightful and entertaining overview of South African life.
Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer Summary
In April 1992 a young man from a well-to-do family hitchhiked to Alaska and walked alone into the wilderness north of Mt. McKinley. His name was Christopher Johnson McCandless. He had given $25,000 in savings to charity, abandoned his car and most of his possessions, burned all the cash in his wallet, and invented a new life for himself. Four months later, his decomposed body was found by a moose hunter. How McCandless came to die is the unforgettable story of Into the Wild. Immediately after graduating from college in 1991, McCandless had roamed through the West and Southwest on a vision quest like those made by his heroes Jack London and John Muir. In the Mojave Desert he abandoned his car, stripped it of its license plates, and burned all of his cash. He would give himself a new name, Alexander Supertramp, and , unencumbered by money and belongings, he would be free to wallow in the raw, unfiltered experiences that nature presented. Craving a blank spot on the map, McCandless simply threw the maps away. Leaving behind his desperate parents and sister, he vanished into the wild. Jon Krakauer constructs a clarifying prism through which he reassembles the disquieting facts of McCandless's short life. Admitting an interst that borders on obsession, he searches for the clues to the dries and desires that propelled McCandless. Digging deeply, he takes an inherently compelling mystery and unravels the larger riddles it holds: the profound pull of the American wilderness on our imagination; the allure of high-risk activities to young men of a certain cast of mind; the complex, charged bond between fathers and sons. When McCandless's innocent mistakes turn out to be irreversible and fatal, he becomes the stuff of tabloid headlines and is dismissed for his naiveté, pretensions, and hubris. He is said to have had a death wish but wanting to die is a very different thing from being compelled to look over the edge. Krakauer brings McCandless's uncompromising pilgrimage out of the shadows, and the peril, adversity , and renunciation sought by this enigmatic young man are illuminated with a rare understanding--and not an ounce of sentimentality. Mesmerizing, heartbreaking, Into the Wild is a tour de force. The power and luminosity of Jon Krakauer's stoytelling blaze through every page. From the Trade Paperback edition.
Some of My Best Friends are White by Ndumiso Ngcobo Summary
This book is a collection of sharp, satirical essays on contemporary South African issues from the point of view of a successful corporate professional - who just happens to be Zulu. Crossing various controversial, amusing and downright confusing racial divides, the book delivers a healthy dose of black - and white - humour as it explores some of the rainbow nations defining characteristics, its many colourful characters and its myriad mysterious idiosyncrasies.
Moxyland by Lauren Beukes Summary
Lauren Beukes's frighteningly persuasive, high-tech fable that follows four narrators living in a dystopian near-future. Kendra, an art-school dropout, brands herself for a nanotech marketing program. Lerato, an ambitious AIDS baby, plots to defect from her corporate employers. Tendeka, a hot-headed activist, is becoming increasingly rabid. Toby, a roguish blogger, discovers that the video games he plays for cash are much more than they seem. On a collision course that will rewire their lives, these characters crackle with bold and infectious ideas, connecting a ruthless corporate-apartheid government with video games, biotech attack dogs, slippery online identities, a township soccer school, shocking cell phones, addictive branding, and genetically modified art. Taking hedonistic trends in society to their ultimate conclusions, Lauren Beukes spins a tale of a utopia gone wrong, satirically undermining the idea of progress as society's white knight.
Cocktails For Three by Madeleine Wickham Summary
Three women, smart and successful, working in the fast and furious world of magazines, meet for cocktails and gossip once a month. Roxanne: glamorous, self-confident, with a secret lover - and hoping that one day he will leave his wife and marry her. Maggie:capable and high-achieving, until she finds the one thing she can't cope with - motherhood. Candice:honest, decent, or so she believes - until a ghost from her past turns up, and almost ruins her life. A chance encounter in the cocktail bar sets in train an extraordinary set of events which upsets all their lives and almost destroys their friendship...
Kruger, Kommandos & Kak by Chris Ash Summary
The second Boer War is the most important war in South African history; indeed, without it, South Africa would likely have not existed. But itÕs also one of the least understood conflicts of the era. Over a century of Leftist bleating and insidious, self-serving revisionism, first by Afrikaner nationalists and then by the apartheid regime, has left the layman with a completely skewed view of the war. Incredibly, most people will tell you that the British attacked the Boers to steal their gold, and that when the clueless, red-jacketed Tommies advanced under orders of bumptious, incompetent British generals they were mowed down in their thousands. Others think of the conflict in terms of ÔBritain against South AfricaÕ and many believe that the Boers actually won the war; the marginally more enlightened explain away the Boer defeat by claiming it took millions of British troops to beat them, or that it was only the ÔgenocideÕ of the concentration camps which forced the plucky Boers to throw in the towel. Ê ItÕs all bosh. This book will take everything you thought you ÔknewÕ about the war and turn it on its head. From KrugerÕs expansionist dream of an Afrikaans empire Ôfrom the Zambesi to the CapeÕ, to the murder and devastation wrought on Natal by his invading commandos, to the savage massacres of thousands of blacks committed by the ÔgallantÕ bitter-einders, the reader will have his eyes opened to the brutal realities of the conflict, and be forced to reassess previously held notions of the rights and wrongs of the war. Hard-hitting and uncomfortable reading for those who do not want their bubble of ignorance burst, Kruger, Kommandos & Kak exposes that side of the Boer War which the apartheid propaganda machine didnÕt want you to know about.
Origin by Dan Brown Summary
The #1 New York Times Bestseller (October 2017) from the author of The Da Vinci Code. Robert Langdon, Harvard professor of symbology, arrives at the ultramodern Guggenheim Museum Bilbao to attend the unveiling of a discovery that “will change the face of science forever.” The evening’s host is Edmond Kirsch, a forty-year-old billionaire and futurist, and one of Langdon’s first students. But the meticulously orchestrated evening suddenly erupts into chaos, and Kirsch’s precious discovery teeters on the brink of being lost forever. Facing an imminent threat, Langdon is forced to flee. With him is Ambra Vidal, the elegant museum director who worked with Kirsch. They travel to Barcelona on a perilous quest to locate a cryptic password that will unlock Kirsch’s secret. Navigating the dark corridors of hidden history and extreme religion, Langdon and Vidal must evade an enemy whose all-knowing power seems to emanate from Spain’s Royal Palace. They uncover clues that ultimately bring them face-to-face with Kirsch’s shocking discovery…and the breathtaking truth that has long eluded us.
Winners Take All by Anand Giridharadas Summary
The New York Times bestselling, groundbreaking investigation of how the global elite's efforts to "change the world" preserve the status quo and obscure their role in causing the problems they later seek to solve. An essential read for understanding some of the egregious abuses of power that dominate today’s news. Former New York Times columnist Anand Giridharadas takes us into the inner sanctums of a new gilded age, where the rich and powerful fight for equality and justice any way they can--except ways that threaten the social order and their position atop it. We see how they rebrand themselves as saviors of the poor; how they lavishly reward "thought leaders" who redefine "change" in winner-friendly ways; and how they constantly seek to do more good, but never less harm. We hear the limousine confessions of a celebrated foundation boss; witness an American president hem and haw about his plutocratic benefactors; and attend a cruise-ship conference where entrepreneurs celebrate their own self-interested magnanimity. Giridharadas asks hard questions: Why, for example, should our gravest problems be solved by the unelected upper crust instead of the public institutions it erodes by lobbying and dodging taxes? He also points toward an answer: Rather than rely on scraps from the winners, we must take on the grueling democratic work of building more robust, egalitarian institutions and truly changing the world. A call to action for elites and everyday citizens alike.
The Flame by Leonard Cohen Summary
The final work from Leonard Cohen, Canada's most celebrated poet and an artist whose audience spans generations and whose work is known and loved throughout the world. The Flame is a stunning collection of Leonard Cohen's last poems, selected and ordered by the author in the final months of his life. Featuring lyrics, prose pieces, and illustrations, the book also contains an extensive selection from Cohen's notebooks, which he kept in poetic form throughout his life, and offers an unprecedentedly intimate look inside the life and mind of a singular artist and thinker. An enormously powerful final chapter in Cohen's storied literary career, The Flame showcases the full range of Leonard Cohen's lyricism, from the exquisitely transcendent to the darkly funny. By turns devastatingly sad and winningly strange, these are the works of a poet and lyricist who set out to explore our darkest questions and came back wanting, yearning for more.