The Broken River Tent

Mphuthumi Ntabeni

12-19-23

Abridgement

Unabridged

Genre

Fiction/Literary

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12-19-23

Abridgement

Unabridged

Genre

Fiction/Literary

Description

“Not a book to miss; its existence gives hope for the future…The most powerful, engaging, most deeply researched and philosophically grounded novel by any South African novelist so far.” Paul Trewhela, author of Out of Quatro: Uncovering the Exile History of the ANC and SWAPO

The Broken River Tent is a novel that marries imagination with history. 

It is about the life and times of Maqoma, the Xhosa chief who was at the forefront of fighting British colonialism in the Eastern Cape during the nineteenth century. The story is told through the eyes of a young South African, Phila, who suffers from what he calls triple “N” condition—neurasthenia, narcolepsy, and cultural ne plus ultra. This gives him access to the analeptic memory of his people.

After being under immense mental pressure, he crosses the mental divide between the living and the dead and is visited by Maqoma. They engage in different conversations about cultural history, literature, religion, the past, and contemporary South African life.

The Broken River Tent was the University of Johannesburg Debut Novel Prize winner in 2019 and was longlisted for the 2019 Sunday Times Literature Prize for Fiction. 

Praise

“Not a book to miss; its existence gives hope for the future…The most powerful, engaging, most deeply researched and philosophically grounded novel by any South African novelist so far.” Paul Trewhela, author of Out of Quatro: Uncovering the Exile History of the ANC and SWAPO

Details
More Information
Language English
Release Day Dec 18, 2023
Release Date December 19, 2023
Release Date Machine 1702944000
Imprint Rising Action Publishing
Provider Rising Action Publishing
Categories Literature & Fiction, Genre Fiction, Historical Fiction, Literary Fiction, World Literature
Author Bio
Mphuthumi Ntabeni

Mphuthumi Ntabeni is a writer who resides in Cape Town. He contributes to different national and international publications and maintains a column in the Southern Cross, South Africa’s national weekly Catholic newspaper. In 2008 he was one of six writers from the African continent whose collection of short stories were published in the United States in an anthology titled Africa Fresh! New Writings from the First Continent. In 2021 he realized his second novel, The Wanderers. The Broken River Tent won the 2019 University of Johannesburg Debut Novel Prize and was longlisted for the 2019 Sunday Times Literature Prize for Fiction (Barry Ronge Prize).

Overview

The Broken River Tent is a novel that marries imagination with history. 

It is about the life and times of Maqoma, the Xhosa chief who was at the forefront of fighting British colonialism in the Eastern Cape during the nineteenth century. The story is told through the eyes of a young South African, Phila, who suffers from what he calls triple “N” condition—neurasthenia, narcolepsy, and cultural ne plus ultra. This gives him access to the analeptic memory of his people.

After being under immense mental pressure, he crosses the mental divide between the living and the dead and is visited by Maqoma. They engage in different conversations about cultural history, literature, religion, the past, and contemporary South African life.

The Broken River Tent was the University of Johannesburg Debut Novel Prize winner in 2019 and was longlisted for the 2019 Sunday Times Literature Prize for Fiction.