Monday, September 26, 2005

Postcards from South Africa by Rayda Jacobs

Genre: Fiction

Rating: ****

Written by a South African Malay, these short stories pick on the small triumphs and tribulations that are often unique to a South African. The stories that are semi-autobiographical are those most evocative for me of the Cape-Malay life. The atmosphere, family life and little sayings are brilliantly described. Scattered throughout the book are the stories of Sabah, a semi-autobiographical character of Rayda Jacobs. These stories describe snapshots in her life as she grows up in Apartheid South Africa, eventually emigrates and then returns in a post-Apartheid era. I must admit that I did not find this book as enjoyable as her other work “Confessions of a Gambler” but maybe that is because I could identify more with that story being muslim myself and knowing the culture.

These stories would undoubted shed more light on non South Africans as it gives a very personal account of what it was like to grow up in those times. I did not think so, but a friend who also read the book did not like it for its pessimism. She felt that the author focussed on all the negative aspects of South Africa. But I like the view shown, it is different, and it is real. It is a noble cause to try always to be positive but is it not as noble to educate outsiders of what we really feel?


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At 6:12 PM, Blogger saaleha said...


read any other good books lately?


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