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It is a time of triumph - and looming danger From the award-winning Luke Molver comes a new graphic novel that will continue to make South African history fun and interesting. The defeat of the slave-trading clans, as seen in Shaka Rising, was a good thing for the Zulu kingdom, but a dangerous new tide of colonisation was rising as foreign fortune hunters arrived from across the sea. Even within King Shaka's own lands, treachery loomed, threatening the balance of power. King Shaka is the second graphic novel featuring one of our biggest African heroes. We walk with him as he faces new challenges in a changing world, while he strives to shield his people from danger. The foreword of this colourful book is written by Dr Sibongiseni Mkhize, Chief Executive Officer of the South African State Theatre in Pretoria. This is the second graphic novel in the African Graphic Novel Series, created by the Pietermaritzburg-based consortium Story Press Africa, published by Catalyst Press, and distributed by LAPA. During May 2019, the first book in the series, Shaka Rising: A Legend of the Warrior Prince, won a major award in the USA. It was named a 2019 Honor Book by the Children's Africana Book Awards.
Shaka has fought his brother to the death for rulership of the Zulu. Now king of the southern chiefdoms, Shaka seeks to uplift his people, consolidate alliances, and expand the reach of his power. But challenges both external and internal threaten his rule. A rogue military unit exacts revenge on its enemies. Land-hungry Europeans arrive and ingratiate themselves with Shaka, even while plotting their own path to power. And closer to home, Shaka's own brothers conspire in secret.
In a land beset by political turmoil and bloody conflict comes the epic saga of Shaka. Ousted by one of his chief father's jealous wives and raised in exile, his destiny is sealed through allegiance to a rival chief. Responding to threats from expanding slave trade in southern Africa, Shaka consolidates a new kingdom through warfare, mediation, and shrewd diplomacy. A worthy introduction that offers a young Anglophone audience entry into a legend of Africa without the annoyance of overtranslation and with refreshingly three-dimensional characters. --Kirkus .
This full-colour graphic novel places Shaka’s rule against the slave trade that was expanding from the East African coast, and the Europeans spreading inland from the south. It draws on the recent research of Prof. Dan Wylie and explores the rise to power of a shrewd young prince who had to consolidate a new kingdom through warfare, mediation, and political alliances in order to defend his people against the expanding slave trade.
All the research is expertly repackaged by the young South African graphic novelist Luke Molver and author Mason O’Connor.
Molver explains: “I believe that people are inherently the same: we feel the same emotions, burn under the same sun and bleed the same red. Shaka Rising is an epic tale set in a different age, but its characters and themes are as familiar to us as sibling rivalry, the heartache of a lost love, or simply a yearning to belong. It is as much a coming-of-age tale as it is a saga of war and politics.”
Molver lives in Durban.
Story Press Africa is a proudly South African imprint. This book has recently been launched in the USA to much acclaim and LAPA is proud to help present it to South African audiences.
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