Now on Paperight: the Harmony High Series for Teens

Hey you! Here’s a brand spanking new poster to stick up in your Paperight outlet! (Click here for access to a PDF that you can print out.)

Harmony High is a great South African success story. By reflecting the true lives of South African youths (with an extra sprinkle of drama, naturally), Harmony High’s teenage tales of lost love, betrayal, peer pressure and not-so-petty crime are putting to rest the myth that South Africans (and especially South African teens) don’t like to read.

Since its launch one year ago, the Harmony High series has been read by thousands of teenagers and adults in book form and on Mxit.

This week’s poster sees the first two Harmony High books to be put on Paperight: Broken Promises – the tale of a young woman with stars in her eyes held back by the backstabbing men around her (including her mom’s new boyfriend) – and Two-faced Friends, a story about moving to the big city and finding out that the lights and the cool kids aren’t as wonderful as they first seemed.

With great stories at affordable prices, now every teenager can read a story that reflects their life, their problems and, most importantly, their ambitions. With your help, Paperight and Harmony High can #getteensreading!

(If you’d like to see any additions or changes to outlet posters in the future, why not e-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.

Paperight outlet poster: Awesome African fiction!

Outlet poster: African fiction

Well, hello there! Here’s a new poster to stick up in your Paperight outlet! (Click here for access to a PDF that you can print out.)

Although in past weeks we’ve been focusing on mostly education resources in our little newsletters, we should emphasise how much Paperight has to offer recreational readers, too! Apart from our awesome and ever-growing library of classics, we’ve recently listed a whole bunch of new vibrant African fiction on offer on Paperight. Leading the charge is acclaimed South African author Arja Salafranca’s brilliant collection of short stories, The Thin Line, which has recently been longlisted for this year’s prestigeous Wole Soyinka Award. We also have amazing books from Zimbabwe, Ghana, Kenya, North Africa and everywhere in between.

In other cool news, our new-style featured content poster now allows you to scribble in the prices your outlet will charge for the printing of certain books. Want to make some books more appealing than others? Simply write in a flat cost for the printing of a book that will cover both the licence fee and your service charges, to help your customers know how much a certain book will cost up-front. Simple!

(If you’d like to see any additions or changes to outlet posters in the future, why not e-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!

Paperight book reviews: The Pat Hobby Stories – F. Scott Fitzgerald

Every couple of weeks (or thereabouts), one member of the Paperight team will write about a book he or she bought and printed at a Paperight outlet, in order to get to know our products and outlets better and to ensure our team’s collective reading health.

Starting this little venture off is communications chief/moonlighting journalist Nick Mulgrew, who bought F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Pat Hobby Stories from 3@1 Cavendish, and who thinks big words make him sound smart. (They don’t.)

As I once said in an author profile on blog a few months ago, F. Scott Fitzgerald didn’t have much of a happy life. With an immense talent matched only by a propensity for self-destruction, Fitzgerald’s life very closely imitated his art.

His best-known works are his quartet of finished novels, the most-loved of which undoubtedly being 1922’s The Great Gatsby, a novel that admittedly doesn’t have the most involved plot  – a popular, nouveau-rich man throws a few parties, dotes on love unrequited, and is shot in his swimming pool – but, as per the Fitzgeraldian mode, is heavy on symbolism: the clash of old money and new, of raining ash and glitter, and the seemingly omniscient eyes of advertising billboards silently watching over a proxy world for the Jazz Age that Fitzgerald concurrently loved and hated.

Fitzgerald’s life was notoriously troubled, and it didn’t have a happy end either. At the time of his death from a heart attack at the age of 42, he considered himself a failure. His books had not yet garnered the legendary status, the motion picture reboots, and the mythology that they enjoy today. He wrote semi-autobiographically: his tumultous relationships with fellow writers and the toxicity of his marriage to Zelda – a socialite and writer blessed with a tolerance for alcohol to rival her husband’s, but only a fraction of his literary talents – only heightened the sense of purposelessness in his novels, as well as his own feelings of inadequacy while trying to make money writing screenplays in young Hollywood in his latter years.

Inwardly, Fitzgerald suffered in movietown – he found the work degrading, and suffered with tuberculosis possibly resulting from decades of heavy drinking – but the external manifestations of his internal strife were, much like the rest of his work, irresistibly entertaining. Not widely-known as part of the Fitzgerald canon, The Pat Hobby Stories are a collection of 17 short stories written somewhat nostalgically about his time in Hollywood, following the exploits and spiralling misfortune of a slightly above-average silent film screenwriter struggling in the newly-dawned motion picture age.

Reduced to a skulking alcoholic, Pat Hobby is a figure of post-talkies desperation, seeking piecemeal work and concocting scams to secure him some screen credit and – ever the driving impulses in Fitzgerald’s work – love, fame and money. Typically, however, Hobby’s bungling schemes don’t work out, only deepening the erstwhile social climber’s misery and humiliation further.

Fitzgerald’s fine-tuned senses of self-parody and perspective save the Pat Hobby Stories from becoming a series of tiny self-directed dirges. Driven by many of the same spirits as 2011’s surprise hit (silent) film The Artist, the Pat Hobby Stories lilt with black humour and wit, and collectively form a comedic, full-length portrait of the sort of man Fitzgerald might have been without the saving grace of his singular talent: a sputtering, disenfranchised hack kicking about the studio lot.

Tragically, Fitzgerald might have thought himself more Pat Hobby than the Great American Novelist he really was, even after the successes of The Great Gatsby and This Side of Paradise, which was published in 1920. After a life of chronic ambivalence, a life then remembered less for its successes than its defeats, he died in the middle of the Pat Hobby stories’ run in Esquire magazine between January 1940 and May 1941. The run didn’t stop with his death: the final stories were published posthumously; effectively the first acts of his legacy, and his slow rise to the pantheon of literary greats.

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.

More study guides! More success!

(Are you a Paperight outlet? If so, then here’s a new poster for you to print and put up in your business to advertise Paperight to your customers. Simply click here for a PDF of this poster that can be printed up to A3 size and displayed in your business!)

Paperight is super proud to announce a new distribution partnership with Oxford University Press Southern Africa. Starting today as a pilot project, over 30 of OUPSA’s excellent study guides will be available to print at any Paperight outlet.

As one of the country’s most respected educational and scholarly publishers, OUPSA is committed to supplying South African learners and teachers with high-quality, curriculum-compliant support from primary to tertiary level. By becoming the latest publisher to sign up with Paperight’s distributed print-on-demand system, OUPSA ensure that learners throughout South Africa will have improved access to their excellent support – more specifically, their excellent and comprehensive study guides for Grades 10 through to matric.

A total of fifteen subjects are catered for in the Exam Success series, along with specialised guides to the most regularly-prescribed English drama, poetry and short fiction. Exam Success guides also emphasise a holistic approach to studying, offering mock exam questions, practical studying suggestions and timetables to learners, helping them to maximise the amount of knowledge and insight they gain from the time they spend in front of their books.

The agreement also fortifies Paperight’s ever-expanding library of educational and scholarly texts, available through any of the 100-plus outlets that have signed up with Paperight to date, overcoming continuing deficiencies in book distribution in South Africa, and helping children to acquire the support they need to achieve maximum success at school and beyond.

Arthur Attwell, Paperight’s founder and CEO, said: “Having worked for many years in educational publishing, I know that every person in this industry wants to make books easily available to every South African. It’s great to be working with OUPSA to tackle this challenge in new ways. This collaboration is also especially meaningful for me, primarily because I started my own publishing career with OUPSA fourteen years ago.”

Great resources need not be locked up in expensive bookstores in big cities. Now OUPSA Exam Success guides are available anywhere, and you can find a full list of them here.

The Hairdresser of Harare

The Hairdresser of HarareSo excited to have so many great-looking books from the African Book Collective on Paperight today.

I love the cover of The Hairdresser of Harare by Tendai Huchu – that alone is enough to make me want to read it!

Books from the African Books Collective available NOW!

Wonderful success! Over 400 books from the African Books Collective are now available from Paperight!

Representing over 120 publishers from 21 African countries, the African Books Collective is dedicated to strengthening indigenous African writing and scholarship, and increasing the visibility and accessibility of African culture and social science. Featuring some of the best independent original African writing from across the mother continent, Paperight’s library of ABC books is an incredibly rich resource for writers, scholars and professionals working or studying in Africa-related fields.

And do you know what the best bit is? It’s all available anywhere through any copy shop through Paperight.

For a full list of all books available from the African Books Collective, click here.

Paperight outlet poster: Let’s Talk About Varsity!

Let's Talk About Varsity Outlet Poster

Are you a Paperight outlet? If so, then here’s a new poster for you to print and put up in your business to advertise to your customers. Simply click here for a PDF of this poster that can be printed up to A3 size and displayed in your business!

Let’s Talk About Varsity (and its Afrikaans companion Uniwrsityt: Wat Jy Wil Weet) is a life orientation book written by some of South Africa’s very best educators – such as author and University of the Free State VC Jonathan Jansen and famous sports scientist Tim Noakes – that aims to prepare teenagers and young adults for the sometimes-overwhelming task of starting tertiary education, giving information about various institutions, qualifications and  in South Africa. More than just a guide to universities, however, Let’s Talk About Varsity also helps prospective students learn more about the various careers and academic fields they can enter – suited not only to their abilities, but also to their emotions and aspirations – helping them get the best possible information to make the right choice for their future happiness.

It’s also incredibly pretty and well-written – that’s a bonus.

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!

Paperight outlet poster: Siyavula Everything Maths CAPS Grade 10!

Are you a Paperight outlet? If so, then here’s a new poster for you to print and put up in your business to advertise to your customers. Simply click here for a PDF of this poster that can be printed up to A3 size and displayed in your business!

Everything Maths is a curriculum-compliant Grade 10 Maths textbook from the wonderful team at Siyavula. Siyavula textbooks are authorised by government for official use, and collaboratively authored by many of South Africa’s very best teachers. This year they have released their textbooks for Grade 10 and, as the new CAPS curriculum comes into effect, will be releasing lots of new textbooks for other grades, too. (Which will, of course, all be available on Paperight!) The best bit? They require no licence fee to print for your customers!

For the full range of Siyavula textbooks (including textbooks for the current Grade 11 and 12 curriculum) available on Paperight, click here!

Happy printing!