Home > Thoughts for the Day, Work-related, Writing and Poetry > Mystery, Maudie, and South African Sunsets–A Review

Mystery, Maudie, and South African Sunsets–A Review

Author Pierre Van Rooyen ensures that when this tantalizing period story begins, the reader is transported to the suburbs of Johannesburg, South Africa. The narrator is the middle child of a widowed father. Frog–Victor, aged 10–is the oldest, and Maudie—aged 6–is the youngest.

Written in memoir-style, the story looks back at a life lived amidst personal mysteries. Maudie had witnessed her mother’s and uncle’s deaths. The event left her mute, suffering from frequent nightmares. The book’s title derives from the fact that Maudie felt herself to be a different color each day. On Saturdays she was gold.

The story’s memories flow like a southern river on a summer day; persistent and revealing all the dirt scraped from banks on its way past. The dirt, in this case, is a rich setting filled with those details that give a place flavor and substance.

The characters, with their unique speech patterns, begin to feel like the quirky kids down the street; those with secrets held from strangers and knowledge gained from life’s hurdles and speculation.

The mystery that surrounds Maudie and the fears that drive her nightmares and superstitions also drive the story. Promises of native sorcery creep into the story often enough to keep pages turning until the end when all is revealed. The use of the narrator’s small asides to the reader makes effective use of backstory to keep clarity in order.

This 325 page book appeals to younger readers as easily as to adults. The characters hold court for all and deliver a well-seasoned performance. Pierre Van Rooyen has created a place where readers can go looking for foreign adventure, chilling speculation, and come away with deeper thoughts to ponder.

Endaxipress has a winner on its hands with Saturdays Are Gold. This reviewer can recommend this as a page turner of the best kind.

 

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  1. August 10, 2011 at 1:51 pm

    You should be hired to advertise for the author, Clauds. Fantastically seductive review.

    • claudsy
      August 10, 2011 at 7:52 pm

      Marie,

      I was hired for free and gave it my all. I like doing reviews when I have the time. I know that I’m going to be making the time again soon to do them on a regular basis.

      I’m glad you liked it. And it’s a really good book.

  2. August 12, 2011 at 4:40 am

    In case any of your readers would like to participate I hope you don’t mind me pointing out that 7 paperback copies of Pierre van Rooyen’s Saturdays Are Gold are available to win at Goodreads

    http://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/12974-saturdays-are-gold

    – closing date for the Giveaway is November 18th.

    XX

  3. August 12, 2011 at 4:41 am

    Grrr meant to say ‘your’ of course, sorry for the typo.

    • claudsy
      August 28, 2011 at 3:38 pm

      No problem, Michele.

  4. August 30, 2011 at 6:31 pm

    Hi, i think that i saw you visited my weblog thus i came to “return the favor”.I’m attempting to find things to improve my website!I suppose its ok to use some of your ideas!!

    • claudsy
      August 30, 2011 at 9:12 pm

      I’m always glad to have legitimate comments. Thank you.

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