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NB: as of 23 September 2008, all new artSMart articles are being published on the site news.artsmart.co.za.

CRESSWELL & SCHOLTZ (article first published : 2008-01-3)

Evelyn Cresswell and Pieter Scholtz in association with Adams Bookshop launched their latest books in December at Adams, Musgrave Centre. The two publications are Keeping The Hours : on the frontiers of faith by Evelyn Cresswell published by Cluster Publications, Pietermaritzburg and The Book Of Spells : journeys into the past by Pieter Scholtz published by Horus Publications, Durban

Based in Zululand, Evelyn Cresswell is connected with the Phoenix Organisation that works with prisoners and she has published two books of her own poetry. She graduated from the Universities of Natal and Cape Town and has taught at various tertiary and secondary institutions. She was also appointed to the staff of a central city church in Birmingham, UK, before returning to be the first study group organiser of the Christian Institute founded by Ds Beyers Naude.

Keeping The Hours is a story of faith and hope spanning the last 50 years. It uncovers elements of South Africa’s story of transformation that reflect not only the lives of the sisters, of herself and some of the country’s courageous leaders, but also the importance of what ordinary South Africans think and believe.

Pieter Scholtz describes his novel, The Book Of Spells : journeys into the past written for teenagers and young adults, as “magical realism”. The story focuses on a boy named Kevin who decides to try out some of the spells in an old book bought from a second-hand bookshop, initiating a series of enthralling adventures. Through the spells in the book, Kevin and his friend Diana journey into the past. Their travels take them to Ancient Egypt as well as to the times of poet and story-teller, Geoffrey Chaucer. The final tale takes them back for ten years, to witness the release from prison of Nelson Mandela. This momentous event is given an unexpected twist when Kevin helps to avert an assassination attempt.

Pieter Scholtz is Emeritus Professor of Drama from the University of Natal, Durban campus, where he headed the Drama Department for more than 20 years. He has written and published 25 plays for young audiences, most of which were presented in the University Open-air theatre which is now named after him. More recently, he has written two novels for the young (Tales of the Tokoloshe and The Demon of the Curry Powders), published by Struik Publishers.




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