Category Archives: Recommended books

Enter the Youngsters!

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Till now, it’s been hard for teens to read in-depth about their favourite South African icons. From today, you can get the inside scoop yourself at hundreds of Paperight copy shops around the country. The Youngsters series are short books by celebs and leaders Danny K, Khaya Dlanga, Anele Mdoda, Zama Ndlovu and more.

These trend-setting authors offer fresh and sharp insights into the triumphs and travails of their lives, their professions and South Africa at large. From gender and race to hair and makeup; from radio and comedy to personal empowerment. Love and sex in the time of Facebook and Twitter. Racism and prejudice after apartheid. Being tongue-tied by South Africa’s many cultures. Each one shares the reality of being a youngster in South Africa. As Khaya Dlanga says of his book, “ I write like people talk. No fancy language; nor do I show how smart I am.”

“There’s this myth around that young people don’t read. That’s crazy. They just can’t find anything they want to read,” says Arthur Attwell, founder and CEO of Paperight. “This series is different, and it’s super exciting to be working with Picador to get it out there.”

You can buy any of seven Youngsters series books – including books by struggle royalty Shaka Sisulu, columnist Sipho Hlongwane and funny-man Nik Rabinowitz – from any Paperight outlet countrywide.

Click here to see all of the Youngsters series books available on Paperight, and follow this link to find your nearest print-on-demand bookstore.

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We’ve put together a The Youngsters poster for your outlet, too. Click here to check it out, or click here to request a custom poster from our design team.

The Paperight Young Writers’ Anthology 2013 has arrived!

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Today we have the honour of introducing the world to South Africa’s future poets, writers and illustrators with the release of the first ever Paperight Young Writers’ Anthology.

Compiled from the very best work from thousands of submissions from South African high school learners – in English, Zulu, Xhosa, Sotho and Afrikaans – the Anthology celebrates a new generation of South African writers and artists.

“The Paperight Young Writers’ Anthology was conceived as a way for us to help spark a culture of writing in our country, in the places where it must be allowed to grow – our schools,” said editor Sibabalwe Oscar Masinyana.

This is an outstanding achievement for the selected students who made it through a highly competitive shortlisting process that lasted over three months and involved thousands of entries in four categories – poetry, short stories, essays and illustrations. Together, the pieces represent a broad spectrum of South African experiences and concerns. In the run-up to Youth Day, we wanted to uncover and celebrate a new generation of South African writers and artists– we think the Paperight Young Writers’ Anthology 2013 is a great example of the high standard of writing and illustration emerging in our country that is too often overlooked.

We also took the opportunity to reward a winner in each of the four categories with a R1000 cash prize. The selection process was undertaken by a panel of esteemed judges and critics, including poet and academic Sarah Rowan, Dr. Hedley Twidle of the UCT Department of English Language and Literature, Professor Russell Kaschula of Rhodes University’s School of Languages, and art curator Gabi Ngcobo. The winners are:

  • Poetry: James Sulter (St John’s College, Johannesburg)
  • Short fiction: Jenna Solomon (German International School, Cape Town)
  • Essay: Triston Liebenberg (Bergvliet High School, Cape Town)
  • Illustration: Chad van Heerden (Eden College, Durban)

The Anthology will serve as an important introduction to the Paperight network to those who currently need it most, our country’s youth. “Many of the people using our network are high school students, buying matric study guides and past exam papers,” said Paperight founder and CEO Arthur Attwell. “The Anthology is a way for us to engage with these learners and find talented young writers among them. Now it’s blossomed into a rich piece of literature in its own right.”

The Young Writers’ Anthology is available right now! So get to your nearest Paperight outlet to see what the fuss is about. Follow us on Facebook to take part in the mounting excitement as we launch Anthology teasers and competitions.

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We’ve been kind enough to put together a Young Writers’ Anthology poster for you, too, whether you want to put them up in your school, or your outlet. Click here to check it out, or click here to get a custom poster done for your school or outlet from our design team.

Paperight and Together We Pass launch Now What? A guide to studying with Unisa

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Paperight and Together We Pass are proud to announce the launch of our new book, Now What? A Guide to studying with Unisa.

With upwards of 300 000 enrolled students – including a full third of South Africa’s tertiary student body – Unisa is the largest university in Africa, and one of the biggest distance-learning institutions in the world. By enabling people of all ages to study a wide range of courses in their own time, Unisa has entrenched itself as a valuable part of many people’s lives.

But as with most things, distance learning has its pitfalls. Without daily contact with peers and professors, distance learning can be difficult to plan, manage and fund – plus, doing all of those assignments and studying for all those exams by yourself can be terribly lonely.

“We’ve spoken to hundreds of Unisa students throughout South Africa about their distance learning problems,” explained Paperight’s Content Manager Tarryn-Anne Anderson, “and it turns out that there are a lot of problems with studying through Unisa, problems that nobody really tells you how to solve. How should I plan my degree? How can I finance it? How do I find other people I can share tips with?”

Now What? is here to answer all those niggling questions. A short, friendly guide to the biggest problems Unisa students say they have, Now What? includes sections on:

  • degree planning
  • time management
  • joining a study group
  • effective and enjoyable studying
  • keeping motivated
  • dealing with stress
  • understanding exam questions
  • finding and managing funding
  • getting in touch with Unisa’s different departments

and more flashpoints of distance-studying angst.

So, if you’re in need of a little help in your time of study-induced frustration, get your copy of Now What? from any Paperight outlet. And join our Facebook group – where you can find study partners and share exam tips – while you’re at it!

Click here for access to an A1 poster advertising Now What? to stick up in your copy shop (600kb PDF)

Project H is here!

(Click here to access a .pdf of this poster that you can print out!)

Looking for something to break the exam stress, the holiday boredom, or just need something exciting to read?

Project H is South Africa’s first murder mystery graphic novel, and it’s available to buy from Paperight. Lovingly illustrated and expertly written, Brandon Carsten’s debut book is a bonafide thriller. The story of a Capetonian cop made redundant in a utopian South Africa – a reformed country seemingly without crime, poverty or belief in God – who is forced to investigate his wife’s murder and the truth behind a nationwide revolution, Brandon Carsten’s debut book is set to be a hit for comic enthusiasts and newcomers alike.

If you’re a Paperight outlet and would like a personalised version of this poster – or if you would like to give us suggestions for and comments on our outlet posters – please don’t hesitate to mail us at team@paperight.com.

To sign up to our fortnightly outlet newsletter – featuring the best Paperight content and news, as well as posters for your outlet – simply sign up by clicking here!

Happy birthday HP Lovecraft

Today marks the 122nd birthday of Howard Phillips Lovecraft, often thought of as the father of the horror, fantasy, and science fiction genres.  A prodigal poet by the age of six, Lovecraft’s love for both writing and all things weird was fostered by his grandfather who encouraged the young boy’s talent, and told him his own original stories of gothic horror.

Possibly one of Lovecraft’s best known stories is The Call of Cthulhu, first published in 1926, which tells of the discovery of a great creature residing at the bottom of the ocean. The book is regarded by scholars as one of Lovecraft’s “great texts”, and it’s title monster has captured the imaginations of countless readers and writers in the decades after its initial conception – still prevailing today through music, art, film and print media.

If you have not yet joined the so-called “Cult of Cthulhu”, you can buy The Call of Cthulhu from most Paperight outlets for under R25,00.

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Testing Democracy – Neeta Misra-Dexter

Our library of over 400 books from the African Books Collective is an incredibly rich resource of African literature and scholarship.

I especially like Neeta Misra Dexter’s Testing Democracy, a wonderfully insightful inquiry of the important relationship between development and democracy. Can a country truly be called democratic if it remains chronically underdeveloped? Is a citizen’s right to participate in the democratic process negatively affected when life is a day-to-day struggle?

Misra-Dexter answer these questions here, using South Africa as a case study, arguing along the way that underdevelopment damages any state’s claims to democracy, leading to single-party states, institutionalised inequality and encroachments on human dignity.

Heavy stuff, then. But a necessary inquiry in any case. I’m happy that these sorts of books are now available through any copy shop through Paperight. It can only do good.