Related to: 'John Humphrys'

Hodder & Stoughton

Step By Step

Simon Reeve
Authors:
Simon Reeve

TV documentary maker Simon Reeve has dodged bullets on frontlines, hunted with the Bushmen of the Kalahari, dived with manta rays, seals and sharks, survived malaria, walked through minefields, tracked lions on foot, been taught to fish by the President of Moldova, and detained for spying by the KGB. After a decade spent making more than 80 programmes he has become a familiar face on British TV, well known for his extraordinary journeys across jungles, deserts, mountains and oceans, and to some of the most beautiful, dangerous and remote regions of the world. But what most people don't know is that Simon's own journey started in a rough area of Acton, West London where he was brought up and left school with no qualifications. For the first time he will tell his life story with a book rich in anecdotes to entertain and inform readers about some of the most fascinating (and often dangerous) places in the world and what it took to reach them.

Two Roads

Adventures of a Young Naturalist

David Attenborough
Authors:
David Attenborough

THE SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER - The gripping adventures of a young David Attenborough, published in a beautiful gift hardback, with a new introduction and a new selection of 90 pictures, including colour'A marvellous book ... unputdownable ... utterly engaging' Telegraph'An elegant and gently funny writer' The Times 'His writing is as impressive and as enjoyable as his TV programmes and there can be no higher praise' Daily ExpressIn 1954, a young David Attenborough was offered the opportunity of a lifetime - to travel the world finding rare and elusive animals for London Zoo's collection, and to film the expeditions for the BBC for a new show called Zoo Quest. This book records those voyages, which mark the very beginning of a career that spans decades and stretches across continents, from Life on Earth to Blue Planet II, from the deepest oceans, the darkest jungles and everywhere in between'. Staying with local tribes while trekking in search of giant anteaters in Guyana, Komodo dragons in Indonesia and armadillos in Paraguay, he and the rest of the team battled with cannibal fish, aggressive tree porcupines and escape-artist wild pigs, as well as treacherous terrain and unpredictable weather, to record the incredible beauty and biodiversity of these regions. The methods may be outdated now, but the fascination and respect for the wildlife, the people and the environment - and the importance of protecting these wild places - is not.Written with Attenborough's trademark wit and charm, Adventures of a Young Naturalist is not just the story of a remarkable adventure, but of the man who made us fall in love with the natural world, and who is still doing so today.Praise for Sir David Attenborough'A great educator as well as a great naturalist' - Barack Obama'Sir David is a wizard of television, and, like Gandalf or Dumbledore, he has a near-magical gift for combining warmth and gravitas . . . the man who, for me, exemplifies the best in British broadcasting' - Louis Theroux'When I was a young boy I used to love turning on the television and watching David's programmes and really feeling like I was either back out in Africa or I was learning about something magical and almost out of this planet' - Prince William

Hodder Paperbacks

Blood Sister

Dreda Say Mitchell
Authors:
Dreda Say Mitchell

Two Roads

A Dying Breed

Peter Hanington
Authors:
Peter Hanington

A SUNDAY TIMES THRILLER OF THE MONTH'HANINGTON EXCELS... THERE ARE NODS TO LE CARRE' BUT HIS IMPRESSIVE DEBUT IS HIS OWN THING' The Sunday Times'THOUGHTFUL, ATMOSPHERIC AND GRIPPINGLY PLOTTED' Guardian'IMPRESSIVE... HANINGTON HAS TRUE TALENT' The Times'TREMENDOUS' William Boyd'ENTHRALLING' Michael Palin'AMAZINGLY GRIPPING' Melvyn Bragg'A BELTING GOOD READ' A.L. Kennedy'I LOVED EVERY MINUTE IN THIS BOOK'S COMPANY' Fi Glover'A NATURAL STORYTELLER' John Humphrys'DEEPLY INTELLIGENT' Will GompertzKabul, Afghanistan.In a brilliantly plotted contemporary thriller with echoes of Graham Greene and John le Carré, William Carver, a veteran but unpredictable BBC hack, is thrown into the unknown when a bomb goes off killing a local official. Warned off the story from every direction, Carver won't give in until he finds the truth.Patrick, a young producer, is sent out on his first foreign assignment to control the wayward Carver, but as the story unravels it looks like the real story lies between the shadowy corridors of the BBC, the perilous streets of Kabul and the dark chambers of Whitehall.Set in a shadowy world of dubious morality and political treachery, A Dying Breed is a gripping novel about journalism in a time of war, about the struggle to tell the stories that need to be told - even if it is much easier not to.

Hodder & Stoughton

The Soundtrack to My Life

Dermot O'Leary
Authors:
Dermot O'Leary

This is the story of Dermot's life so far, from growing up in semi rural Colchester with his Irish born parents, to landing one of the biggets jobs in television. Throughout this journey, music has been a constant companion: a best friend, confidant, a really annoying sibling, and at times a tormentor. Here Dermot shows that really it is the songs that choose you., not the other way round. These are the tracks that have a hold on us because they have become inextricably linked to the most important moments of our lives and spark the memories and stories that shape us. With a wonderful gift for storytelling Dermot describes with humour and brilliant detail, what it was like to grow up a second generation Irishman in 70s England. The Pope, rebel songs and Irish dancing were all part of everyday life, along with the usual brand of chlidhood nostalgia, like endless summers, freshly cut grass and the occasional dead animal found in a ditch. Dermot's homelife was filled with music which was to set the scene for the years ahead. From Irish folk singer Brendan Shine's Catch Me If You Can to The Smiths, Elbow and Dermot's hero Bruce Springsteen, in Now Playing Dermot shares with us his musical DNA. (P)2014 Hodder & Stoughton

Hodder & Stoughton

Out of Winter

Carol Lee
Authors:
Carol Lee

'A beautifully written book...Essential reading' John Humphrys'Carol Lee is a courageous writer. This book is both tender and tough-minded in its record of one woman's day by day journey through a universal experience' Maggie GeeIn a candid portrayal of the last years of her parents' lives, Carol Lee confronts the sense of loss - and longing - at the heart of her family, and perhaps all families. They have often lived separately - in the UK, Africa, Egypt and the Middle East, her father's sudden illness and her mother's gradual memory loss bringing them together. Returning with her brother as adult 'children' - roles and boundaries between all of them changed - guilt and anger play their part in the two and a half years which follow. But Carol finds delight, too, in stories of her mother practising tango in the tiny kitchen of her childhood home, and she is humbled by her father's courage. Snowbound winters, beach walks in Wales and African times are captured in this account of the turmoil of long-distance care. Along the road back to a parent's house, matters of memory, identity, grief - and renewal - are woven through four people's lives to reveal a rich legacy from the past.

Hodder & Stoughton

Future: All That Matters

Ziauddin Sardar
Authors:
Ziauddin Sardar

In Future: All That Matters, Ziauddin Sardar shows that thinking and speculating about the future has always been a part of human history, but exploring the futures in a systematic and scientific way is a recent phenomenon. What is known variously as 'futures studies', 'futurology' or 'foresight' only emerged as a discipline during the last few decades. The study of the future, however, is not only about 'predicting' or 'forecasting' the future, which is always a perilous exercise. It is also about appreciating the potentials and possibilities, as well as risks and threats, lurking over the horizon. It can enable us both to avoid the dangers as well as shape a viable and desirable future.This book explores the exciting field of futures studies, and shows how knowledge of the future is acquired and put into practice. We examine various methods for studying the future, with the emphasis not so much on predicting specific events but on delineating alternative paths to the future. We look at some celebrated readings of the future as well as case studies where exploration of the future has been used to shape policy and planning in businesses and communities, international organisations and regional institutions, and interest and lobby groups. Finally, the book suggests why and how in an increasingly complex, uncertain and diverse world, the study of the future can help people recover their agency and help them to create the world in which they wish to live. This accessible and readable book will appeal both to students and general readers, giving a fascinating introduction to thinking about the future - and what matters most about it.

Sceptre

Grace and Mary

Melvyn Bragg
Authors:
Melvyn Bragg

John visits his ageing mother Mary in her nursing home by the sea, and mourns the slow fading of her mind. Hoping to shore up her memory, he prompts her with songs, photographs and questions about the 1940s, when she was a young woman and he a child in a small Cumbrian town. But he finds that most of all it is her own mother she longs for - Grace, the mother she barely knew. John sets out to recreate their buried family history, delving into the secrets and silences of Mary's fractured childhood as he imagines the life of her spirited mother. Reaching from the late 19th century to the present, this becomes a deeply moving, reflective elegy on three generations linked by a chain of love, loss, and courage.

Hodder & Stoughton

Extremes

Kevin Fong
Authors:
Kevin Fong
Hodder & Stoughton

Lost For Words

John Humphrys
Authors:
John Humphrys
Hodder & Stoughton

The Welcome Visitor

John Humphrys
Authors:
John Humphrys

'This is an important book. It needs to be ... we are coming to realise that a life well lived might decently conclude with a death well and timely died' TERRY PRATCHETT'Impassioned and impressive' SUNDAY TIMES'A powerful, compassionate book' FT ON SUNDAY* * * * * * *From presenter of Radio 4's Today & national treasure John Humphrys, one of the first books to deal unflinchingly with death and dying well, written in conjunction with a high-profile GP.Death is a subject modern society shies away from. Even doctors avoid the word. But if we regard death as a failure in our desire to prolong life, can we ever arrive at a humane approach to those whose lives have lost meaning? Are we keeping people alive simply because we can?Inspired by his own experience with his father's death from Alzheimer's, John Humphrys and co-author Dr Sarah Jarvis take a wider look at how our attitudes to death have changed as doctors have learned how to prolong life beyond anything that could have been imagined only a few generations ago, and confront one of the great challenges facing the western world today. There are no easy answers but the first step must surely be to accept that death can be as welcome as it is inevitable.The Welcome Visitor is a book which brings genuine knowledge and insight to a taboo subject, while asking the difficult questions that need to be asked about our attitudes and approach to the realities of end-of-life care.

Hodder & Stoughton

Blue Skies & Black Olives

John Humphrys
Authors:
John Humphrys

It was a moment of mad impulse when John Humphrys decided to buy a semi-derelict cottage and a building site on a plot of land overlooking the Aegean. A few minutes' gazing out over the most glorious bay he had ever seen was all it took to persuade him. After all, his son Christopher - a professional musician fluent in Greek - was already raising his family there so he would help build the beautiful villa that John dreamed of. What could possibly go wrong?Everything. John was to spend much of the next four years regretting his moment of madness.Some of it had its comic side. He learned to cope with the escaped peacock that took over his lemon grove and even a colony of rats that took over the cottage. Some of the humans proved trickier: the old man demanding payment for olive trees in the middle of John's own land; the unfriendly neighbour who tried to barricade him in and the friendly neighbour who dragged his lovely old fishing boat onto the beach and set fire to it after a row with his wife. And, of course, the builders. If you have ever struggled with builders, read this and be grateful.John learned a lot about Greece in a short time. He grew to love and lament the country and its people, but was never for a moment bored by them. And Christopher learned a bit more about John. Their shared experience revived keen memories for him of growing up with a father for whom patience was never the strongest virtue...Here father and son tell a story by turns hilarious and revealing about a country that intrigues and infuriates in equal measure.

Hodder & Stoughton

Parky - My Autobiography

Michael Parkinson
Authors:
Michael Parkinson

From prize-winning journalist to chat show king on a show voted one of the top ten British TV programmes of all time, Michael Parkinson's starry career spans over four decades.Now an international celebrity himself, the man from a humble but colourful Yorkshire mining family who can tease out the secrets of even the most reticent star guest, at last reveals his own story, with the easy manner and insight that has kept his audiences fascinated.His distinguished career has involved working on highly acclaimed current affairs and film programmes. His wide interests and expertise include jazz, film, football and cricket.Witty, humorous and blessed with exceptional intellectual clarity, Michael Parkinson's memoir is a joy to read.

Hodder & Stoughton

In God We Doubt

John Humphrys
Authors:
John Humphrys

'All the erudition and pithy wit you would expect from Humphrys, but there is also a charming, genuine enquiry that shines through' MAIL ON SUNDAY* * * * * *Bestselling author, radio presenter and national treasure John Humphrys tackles the big question of God through his own personal journey and argues that doubt is the only credible belief. Throughout the ages believers have been persecuted - usually for believing in the "wrong" God. So have non-believers who have denied the existence of God as superstitious rubbish. Today it is the agnostics who are given a hard time. They are scorned by believers for their failure to find faith and by atheists for being hopelessly wishy-washy and weak-minded. But John Humphrys is proud to count himself among their ranks. In this book he takes us along the spiritual road he himself has travelled. He was brought up a Christian and prayed every day of his life until his growing doubts finally began to overwhelm his faith. As one of the nation's most popular and respected broadcasters, he had the rare opportunity in 2006 of challenging leaders of our three main religions to prove to him that God does exist. The Radio Four interviews - Humphrys In Search of God - provoked the biggest response to anything he has done in half a century of journalism. The interviews and the massive reaction from listeners had a profound effect on him - but not in the way he expected. Doubt is not the easy option. But for the millions who can find no easy answers to the most profound questions it is the only possible one.

Hodder Paperbacks

Beyond Words

John Humphrys
Authors:
John Humphrys

'Wonderfully spirited' DAILY MAILThe follow-up to the Sunday Times Top 10 bestseller Lost for Words, from Today presenter and national treasure John Humphrys.From the huge response to Lost for Words, it's clear that many of us share John's strong feelings about the use and misuse of the English language. Not because we want to split hairs (or infinitives) but because how we use words reveals so much about the way we see the world.Here John takes a sharp look at phrases and expressions in current use to expose the often hidden attitudes that lie behind them - from the schoolroom to the boardroom, from Westminster to the weather forecast. Questioning our assumptions, puncturing our illusions and illuminating the way we live now, Beyond Words is a small book that speaks volumes.

Sceptre

The Centre of the Bed

Joan Bakewell
Authors:
Joan Bakewell
Hodder Paperbacks

Radio: A True Love Story

Libby Purves
Authors:
Libby Purves

Libby Purves has had an ongoing love affair with the radio since her childhood, when she saved her pocket money to buy a d-i-y transistor set. This was the 1950s, pre-television, when the family would gather round the 'wireless' to listen to classic shows such as 'The Glums' and 'Listen with Mother'. Her enthusiasm lasted through the teenage years of Radio Luxemburg and pirate station Caroline and while at university, Libby answered an ad for student volunteers for Radio Oxford. From then on she was hooked and entered the BBC as a trainee Programme Operations Assistant. The past thirty years have seen Libby as one of the most successful and popular BBC Radio 4 broadcasters, with a string of credits to her name including the Today programme, Midweek and The Learning Curve. She takes us behind the scenes of these programmes with amusing and entertaining anecdotes about the personalities involved, near-disasters and triumphs, and also makes an impassioned plea for continued funding and support for radio.

Hodder Paperbacks

The Great Food Gamble

John Humphrys
Authors:
John Humphrys

John Humphrys is passionate about the state of British food, farming, fishing and agriculture. Here, he looks back to the days of organic farming in England when people shared and swapped food and considered the wildlife as well as the farmed animals, crops and fruits. He examines today's travesties: factory farming, pouring chemicals into the land, the scandal of the supermarket wars and cheap imported goods. He then turns to the future and asks: Can we save this ravaged earth and rebuild our community values? Most of all, can we reverse the damage to ourselves and our long-term health that may result from what we eat? John Humphrys' book requires the full attention of anyone who cares about themselves or the future.

Alan Titchmarsh

Alan Titchmarsh is known to millions through the popular BBC TV programmes British Isles: A Natural History, How to be a Gardener, Ground Force and Gardeners' World. But he started out in far humbler beginnings, in a rural childhood on the edge of Ilkley Moor in Yorkshire.After a spell at Kew he became a horticultural journalist, as an Editor of gardening magazines, before becoming a freelance broadcaster and writer.He has twice been named 'Gardening Writer of the Year' and for four successive years was voted 'Television Personality of the Year' by the Garden Writers' Guild. In 2004 he received their Lifetime Achievement Award.Alan has appeared on radio and television both as a gardening expert and as an interviewer and presenter, fronting such programmes as Points of View, Pebble Mill, Songs of Praise, Titchmarsh's Travels and Ask the Family, and since 1983 has presented the BBC's annual coverage of The Chelsea Flower Show. He now has his own daytime TV show on ITV, The Alan Titchmarsh Show. Alan has written more than forty gardening books, as well as seven best-selling novels, including his 2008 success, Folly, which have all made the Sunday Times Bestsellers List. Alan has published three volumes of memoirs; Trowel and Error sold over 200,000 copies in hardback when published in 2002, and Nobbut A Lad, about his Yorkshire childhood, was published in October 2006 with similar success, and his third volume of memoir Knave of Spadeswas a Sunday Times bestseller.He was made MBE in the millennium New Year Honours list and holds the Victoria Medal of Honour, the Royal Horticultural Society's highest award. He lives with his wife and a menagerie of animals in Hampshire where he gardens organically.

My South Africa

Deon Meyer on the new South Africa

If books are windows on the world,1 crime fiction mostly provides a view of the underbelly and back alleys of cities and countries. This is my only genuine regret writing as an author in this genre. Because the real South Africa, the one that I love so passionately, is very different from the narrow and dim view my books probably allow. It is also quite unlike the one you see in those pessimistic fifteen second television news reports in the UK, Europe or Australia. So let me try and set the record straight. My country is breathtakingly beautiful – from the lush, sub-tropical east coast of Kwazulu-Natal, to the serene semi-desert stretching along the Atlantic in the west (which blooms in inde- scribable colour and splendour in Spring). In between, there’s the magnificence of the Lowveld, the Bushveld, the Highveld, the towering Drakensberg mountains, the aching vastness of the Karoo and the dense silence of the Knysna forests . . . Diversity is everywhere. In the climate (mostly perfect sunshine and balmy weather, but we have extremes too, summer highs of more than 50°C in Upington, and winter lows of -15°C in Sutherland – both in the same Northern Cape province), and in the cities (Durban is an intoxicating fusion of Zulu, Indian and British colonial cultures, Cape Town is a heady mix of Malay, Dutch-Afrikaans and Xhosa, Johannesburg is . . . well, modern African-cosmopolitan, utterly unique, and always exciting). The biodiversity of South Africa is truly astonishing. “With a land surface area of 1.2 million square kilometres representing just 1% of the earth’s total land surface, South Africa boasts six biospheres, and contains almost 10% of the world’s total known bird, fish and plant species, and over 6% of the world’s mammal and reptile species.”2 Of course we are also world-famous for our huge collection of wildlife regions and game parks – both public and private – encompassing every possible landscape from deserts to forests, mountains to coast, teeming with wildlife species, including Africa’s Big Five: Leopard, Lion, Buffalo, Elephant and Rhinoceros.3 But most of all, the diversity is in the people who constitute the Rainbow Nation. Our black ethnic groups include the Zulu, Xhosa, Basotho, Bapedi, Venda, Tswana, Tsonga, Swazi and Ndebele.The so-called ‘coloured’ (no, it’s not a derogatory term over here) population is mainly concentrated in the Western Cape region, and come from a combination of ethnic backgrounds including Malay, White, Khoi, San, and Griqua. White South Africans are descendants of Dutch, German, French Huguenots, English and other European and Jewish settlers. And our Indian population came to South Africa as indentured labourers to work in the sugar plantations in the British colony of Natal in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The population of more than fifty million people is made up of African (40.2 million, or 79.5%),White (4.6 million, or 9.0%), Coloured (4.5 million, or 9.0%), and Indian/Asian (1.3 million, or 2.5%). And, having travelled most of the world, I can confidently say, you won’t find friendlier, more hospitable and accommodating people anywhere, irrespective of their race, culture, language or creed. We have nine provinces (Eastern Cape, Gauteng, KwaZulu- Natal, Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, Limpopo, North West, Free State, and Western Cape) and eleven official languages: Afrikaans (13%), English (8%), isiNdebele (1.6%), isiXhosa (18%), isiZulu (24%), Sesotho sa Leboa (9%), Sesotho (8%), Setswana (8%), siSwati (3%),Tshivenda (2%), and Xitsonga (4%).4 Throw all of this together in a democracy not quite twenty years old (a tempestuous teenager, if ever there was one), and you get an effervescent, energetic, dynamic, and often a little chaotic, melting pot – of cultures, people, views, politics, opinions, and circumstance. After the tragedy and oppression of Apartheid, we are still very much coming to terms with – and are sometimes a little overwhelmed by – all the facets of the freedom-diamond. Which means that we argue incessantly, shout, point fingers, blame, accuse, denounce, complain, and criticize, mostly loudly and publicly, like all enthusiastic democrats should. But when our beloved Bafana-Bafana (the national football team), Springboks (our twice World Cup-winning rugby team) or Proteas (the cricket guys) walk onto the field, we stand united, shoulder to shoulder. And mostly, in our day-to-day-lives, we get along rather well. We increasingly study and work and live and love and socialise together, in great harmony. Of course, we have our problems. Poverty is the major one. “There is a consensus amongst most economic and political analysts that approximately 40% of South Africans are living in poverty – with the poorest 15% in a desperate struggle to survive.” However, we are making steady progress. The percentage of the South African population with access to clean drinking water has increased from 62% in 1994, to 93% in 2011. Access to electricity has increased from 34% in 1994, to 84% in 2011.5 In 2010, 13.5 million South Africans benefited from access to social grants, 8.5 million of whom were children, 3.5 million pensioners and 1.5 million people with disabilities. In 1994, only 2.5 million people had access to social grants, the majority of whom were pensioners. And since 1994, 435 houses have been built every day for the poor.6 And you might have heard about our other challenge – South Africa has a bit of a reputation when it comes to crime. I am most definitely going out on a limb here, but having studied the statistics, and looked at the (often unfair) comparisons over the past five years, I honestly believe we don’t quite deserve it. “. . . in relation to the overall risk of victimisation, South Africans are not much more likely to become victims of crime than people in other parts of the world,” Anthony Altbeker recently wrote in a carefully considered and exhaustively researched contribution to the marvellous Opinion Pieces by South African Thought Leaders.7 To put the matter into further perspective: In the two years leading up to the FIFA World Cup held in South Africa in 2010, almost every British, French and German journalist who interviewed me, asked the same question, more or less: “How big a slaughter is it going to be for fans attending the games?” Some were downright accusatory: “How dare you host this magnificent event in such a hazardous country?” A British tabloid even predicted a ‘machete race war’ waiting for visitors.8 And how many soccer fans died during the tournament? None.9 Furthermore, the attendees who were affected by crime-related incidents represented a very meagre 0.009% of the fans. That is far, far less than, for instance, the crime rate in Wales. When World Cup tourists were asked if they would consider visiting South Africa again, 96% said ‘yes’. As a matter of fact, if you are a tourist from the Northern Hemisphere visiting my beautiful country, your chances of becoming a victim of violent crime is less than 0.67%.10 (Compare this to the fact that “the 2011 British Behaviour Abroad Report published by the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) noted that the death rate (including murder and natural causes) of Britons in Thailand was forty-one per 100,000 tourists and for those visiting Germany was twenty-four. Tourists from the UK are far safer visiting South Africa”11 – with just 14.6 per 100,000.12) South Africa’s murder rate dropped by 6.5% in 2010-2011, attempted murder by 12.2%, robbery with aggravating circumstances was down by 12%, and house robberies by 10%.13 Our police services are slowly but surely turning the tide. We struggle with inadequate service delivery, our politicians don’t always live up to our expectations, and our unemployment rate is too high. But our economy is robust, and easily out-performs first-world countries like Greece (no surprise there), Italy, and Spain. South African Tax Revenue has increased from R100 billion in 1994 to R640 billion in 2010. Our debt to GDP ratio is 32% (USA 100%, Japan 200%, UK 90%). (The World Bank recommends a ratio of 60%.) And we are ranked first out of 142 countries in respect of regulation of security exchanges by the World Economic Forum Global Competitiveness Report 2011/12.14 According to the Open Budget Index, South Africa has the most transparent budget in the world. We are the only African country that is a member of the G20. In the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Survey of Democratic Freedom, South Africa ranks 31st out of 184 countries. And according to the Global Competitiveness Report 2010/11, South Africa has the 34th most efficient government out of the 139 countries ranked.15 The number of tourists visiting South Africa has grown from 3.9 million in 1994 to 11.3 million in 2010. South Africa is ranked among the top five countries in the world in respect of tourism growth (growing at three times the global average).16 I could go on. South Africa’s learner-to-teacher ratio improved from 1:50 in 1994 to 1:31 in 2010. According to the Global Competitiveness Report 2011/12, South Africa is ranked 13th out of 142 countries for its quality of management schools. 61% of South African primary school children and 30% of high school children receive free meals as part of the school feeding scheme.17 But none of these facts and figures, as inspiring as they are, will reveal the real reason why I am so unwaveringly optimistic about my country’s future. It is one of the major reasons for the peaceful transition miracle of 1994, it is something woven into the texture of everyday South African life, hidden from the fleeting eyes of foreign journalists on a flying visit, mostly talking only to important folks: The goodwill of ordinary people. Every day, in cities, towns, and tiny villages, small acts of kindness happen between human beings. Individuals who extend a helping hand across racial, cultural, political and linguistic divides, who extend friendship and kindness and empathy. I have been witnessing this for more than forty years, and I absolutely believe it is this goodwill that will carry us through, no matter how challenging the future may be. 1 “Books are the carriers of civilization. Without books, history is silent, literature dumb, science crippled, thought and speculation at a standstill. They are engines of change, windows on the world, lighthouses erected in the sea of time.” - Barbara W. Tuchman, American popular historian and author, 1912-1989. 2 http://www.bcb.uwc.ac.za/envfacts/facts/biosa.htm 3 http://www.sa-venues.com/game_lodges_nationwide_south_afr.htm
 4 http://www.safrica.info/about/facts.htm (percentages rounded off)
 5 http://www.sagoodnews.co.za/fast_facts_and_quick_stats/index.html
 6 Ibid. 7 Penguin, 2011. p. 47.
 8 http://www.dailystar.co.uk/posts/view/129402/WORLD-CUP-MACHETE- THREAT/
 9 http://www.truecrimexpo.co.za/
 10 http://www.info.gov.za/issues/crime/crime_aprsept_ppt.pdf
 11 http://www.issafrica.org/iss_today.php?ID=1394
 12 Ibid.
 13 http://www.sagoodnews.co.za/crime/crime_statistics_show_drop_in_ murder_rate.html
 14 http://www.sagoodnews.co.za/fast_facts_and_quick_stats/index.html 15 Ibid.
 16 Ibid. 17 Ibid.