Your Invitation to an Advance Screening of Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom

Live in Sydney? Want a chance to see one of the biggest films of the year before everyone else?

Hachette Australia are giving you and a friend the opportunity to attend an exclusive pre-screening of Long Walk To Freedom, the award-winning film starring Idris Elba and Naomi Harris, on February 5th at Event Cinemas, George Street, Sydney.

All you need to do is buy Nelson Mandela’s bestselling memoir Long Walk To Freedom and email your order number to promos@booktopia.com.au – the first twenty-five entries will be put on the list at the door! (Apologies, this offer is only available at the Event Cinemas George St, Sydney).

Grab a copy of Long Walk to Freedom here

Continue reading

Nelson Mandela Passes Away, Aged 95

Nelson Mandela on Day After ReleaseFormer South African President and anti-apartheid revolutionary Nelson Mandela has died peacefully at his Johannesburg home after a prolonged lung infection.

His contribution to the world was immense, becoming the first black South African President and a key figure in ending the brutal apartheid regime that had ruled the country since 1948.

After becoming a lawyer, he was repeatedly arrested for anti-government activities and, with the ANC leadership, was charged with treason several times between 1956 and 1961 although never convicted. In 1962 he was arrested, convicted of sabotage and conspiracy to overthrow the government, and sentenced to life imprisonment.

Mandela served 27 years in prison, first on Robben Island, and later in Pollsmoor Prison and Victor Verster Prison. An international campaign lobbied for his release, which was granted in 1990 amid escalating civil strife. Becoming ANC President, Mandela published his autobiography Long Walk to Freedom and led negotiations with President F.W. de Klerk to abolish apartheid and establish multiracial elections in 1994, in which he led the ANC to victory.

He was elected President and formed a Government of National Unity in an attempt to diffuse ethnic tensions. As President, he established a new constitution and initiated the Truth and Reconciliation Commission to investigate past human rights abuses. His administration also introduced measures to encourage land reform, combat poverty and expand healthcare services. He declined to run for a second term, preferring to focus on charitable work in combating poverty and HIV/AIDS through the Nelson Mandela Foundation.

He received international acclaim for his anti-colonial and anti-apartheid stance, having received over 250 awards, including the 1993 Nobel Peace Prize and the US Presidential Medal of Freedom.

For the full list of books about or by Nelson Mandela click here

Niromi de Soyza, author of Tamil Tigress, answers Ten Terrifying Questions

The Booktopia Book Guru asks

Niromi de Soyza

author of Tamil Tigress

Ten Terrifying Questions

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1. To begin with why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourself – where were you born? Raised? Schooled?

I was born in Kandy, the central hill country of Sri Lanka and moved to the northern town of Jaffna when I was eight. As the civil war engulfed the country, I fled to India when I was eighteen and completed my schooling before arriving in Sydney, Australia two years later. I now live in Sydney’s northshore with my husband and Continue reading

William and Kate and the longest bow

My question to you is this. Are there enough awards in the bookselling and publishing industry? Do we have all the bases covered? Most of us are familiar with a fair swag of literary prizes, what with the Nobel, Man Booker, the Miles Franklin, the CBC, Kate Greenaway, Carnegie, and Dublin Prizes, various PM and Premiers’ awards, not to mention a full swag of Costas, Daggers,  Oranges, Varunas, Pulitzers, Koalas, Indies, Hugos, ROMAs. And they are just for writers – by the time we throw in the publishers’ prizes, for design, marketing, flogging (ahem: selling), we’ve got to be in the 100s in the English speaking world alone.

Despite this, there is one area that I think has been sadly overlooked. In fact, I think it is up to Booktopia to establish a new award institution, an institution that I will call the Booktopia Award for the Longest Bow. For those of you unfamiliar with this now rarely used expression, to draw a long bow means to come to a conclusion not generally supported by the evidence. Put simply, it means to exaggerate, or sometimes even, to lie through your teeth. You know what I mean – Margaret Mead is responsible for the sexual revolution, the Iraq war caused the global credit crisis, that sort of thing.

Nominees for The Longest Bow (known hereafter as The Lobbies) will be chosen from amongst the winners of the three sub-categories, namely:

The RRT Lobby – given to the book/genre with the most rapid response time from the original stimulus to the introduction of the book to the marketplace

The Biggest Loser Lobby – given to the book/genre which bombed the most spectacularly

and my own personal favourite, Continue reading

Nelson Mandela : Conversations With Myself

Nelson Mandela is widely considered to be one of the most inspiring and iconic figures of our age. Now, after a lifetime of taking pen to paper to record thoughts and events, hardships and victories, these precious and previously private documents have been gathered together into one incredible volume that offers an unprecedented insight into his life.

Conversations with Myself draws on Mandela’s personal archive of never-before-seen materials to offer unique access to the inner world of an incomparable world leader. Journals kept on the run during the anti-apartheid struggle of the early 1960s; diaries and draft letters written on Robben Island and in other South African prisons during his twenty-seven years of incarceration; notebooks from the post-apartheid transition; private recorded conversations; speeches and correspondence written during his presidency – a historic collection of documents archived at the Nelson Mandela Foundation is brought together in a sweeping narrative of great immediacy and stunning power. An intimate journey from Mandela’s first stirrings of political conscience to his galvanizing role on the world stage, Conversations with Myself illuminates a heroic life forged on the front lines of the struggle for freedom and justice.

While other books have recounted Mandela’s life from the vantage of the present, Conversations with Myself allows for the first time unhindered insight into the human side of the icon.

Nelson Mandela was born in Transkei, South Africa on 18 July 1918. He joined the African National Congress in 1944 and was engaged in resistance against the ruling National Party’s apartheid policies for many years before being arrested in August 1962. Mandela was incarcerated for over twenty-seven years, during which his reputation as a potent symbol of resistance to the anti-apartheid movement grew steadily. Released from prison in 1990, Mandela won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993 and was inaugurated as the first democratically elected president of South Africa in 1994. He is the author of the international bestseller Long Walk to Freedom.

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