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August goals update: books review

authors journey book

In a previous blog post, I have mentioned that one of my goals this year is to finish reading five books. I’m halfway through. Today I’m giving reviews on the books I’ve read so far.

Background: I realised last year that I’ve been reading a lot of blog posts daily but not making time to read books. Hence the idea of me having a goal to read five books this year. Prior to 2017, it’s been years since I actually finished reading a book. My life is consumed by newspapers and online news or blogs.

I realise that I enjoy reading non-fiction stories – getting a glimpse out of someone’s life and how the person overcome obstacles. Also, as a writer, you learn the more you read others’ work.

REVIEWS
I’m finished with the following:
Hy Kom Met die Skoenlappers by Valda Jansen
Business Tips. To My Daughter by Ndzavi Derrick
The Climb: AfriCan’t to AfriCan by KK Diaz

So far I am done with three and a half books. The half one is KK Diaz’s The Climb: AfriCan’t to AfriCan. KK Diaz shares of his journey to summit the Mount. Kilimanjaro – Africa’s highest mountain peak. He did this climb as a business project, a metaphor and a message to businesspeople or youth who have a dream.

What I enjoy about this book is the nitty-gritty behind what goes into The Climb. KK tells about the porters and the guides’ role on their journey. He also shares why they take things slow on their journey. Besides that he shares how business fits into his climb.

For instance, through a networking event, he met someone which led that someone referring him to another person who became his mentor and sponsor. He also shares on his life before The Climb and how he came full circle to what he had done before in business.

The first book I finished reading is my cousin Lynn Nel’s life story. It’s an unpublished book – currently, she is looking for a publishing agent. I am not going to say much about her book until it gets published.

book review valda jansen
One of the first books I finished reading this year is Valda Jansen’s Hy kom met die skoenlappers.

Valda Jansen is a former journalist in South Africa. I got this book, because of my husband, Leslie. He performed at a book launch of Valda in Johannesburg.

I almost didn’t continue with this book after a few chapters. I don’t like reading doom and gloom books because I already read news stories online or see it on the television. This book just started off really sad.

Anyway, this book starts off as very sad, because the leading lady finds out that her former lover died in another country. The book takes you to the memories of how they met to how they were together as a couple.

What I enjoyed about the book is how Valda shared some of her family life stories. Her dad worked for the army during the Apartheid. He was a Coloured man. Valda gave details on to how his profession had an effect on their family life.

There were some shocking moments in the book relating to how her dad would react to things. I loved this because it was unexpected things. Eventually, when I finished the book (within a month), I was happy that I finished the book. The ending was unpredictable – which is a good thing.

The third book is an ebook of entrepreneur Ndzavi Derrick. His book Business Tips. To My Daughter gives lessons to female first-time business owners. It’s a good mentorship book – meaning, you’ll learn a lot from him as a mentor in business. It’s also easy to read and understand.

I am still reading…

Quote from @BonangMatheba’s book #FromAtoB… 😘 #bookstagram #booklover #motivationalquotes #motivation

A post shared by Melissa Javan (@melissajavan) on


From A to B by Bonang Matheba
[I love reading snippets of how Bonang got to her success as a media celebrity. Love how she was told by a mentor to do something out of her comfort zone.]

Kasi Nerd by Tebogo Ditshego
[I love how this book reads like a youth television series.]

The Disruptors: Social Entrepreneurs Reinventing Business and Society by Kerryn Krige and Gus Silber
[It’s taking me ages to read this book because there are different stories and studies done on different social entrepreneurs. So it’s almost like reading a-lot-of-books-in-one. I’m happy that someone who’s work I’ve seen in Port Elizabeth (Neil Campher) is featured in this book. There are some innovative entrepreneurs in this book..!]

So far so good I would say. Tell me in the comments what books you are busy with. Are there any memorable things about a book you have finished?

9 thoughts on “August goals update: books review

  1. I have not read in such a long time! I’m a fiction kind of gal though when I do read. he he. I used to read a book a day when I had the chance, now the kids give me no time…but I will…eventually. I still have a book hubby bought me 2yrs ago that I haven’t touched.

  2. I find that I enjoy writing fiction in my spare time – I used to read it a lot too. I agree- having a kid makes you read less lol

  3. I set up a reading challenge every year on Goodreads to read x amount of books/year. Been doing it for two years now and completed both goals!

    Really chuffed with myself as I’m really bad at getting into the habit of reading in the first half of the year 🙈

  4. I lost my love for reading at a sad stage..but since im gonna study again i need something besides studying to keep me busy…I havnt read in a loooonggg time..and just now i think of buying me a nice book to get the “lees gogga” borrel up in me again…hope it’ll help♡

  5. Reading a book is a good escape. Yes reading blogs too but there’s something different to reading a book 🙂 I think.

  6. I love reading and what I love is that you shared South African stories. I must say when I buy books the SA ones are not on top of my list. I will make a point to get a SA book. My most notable SA BOOKS I read :Trevor Noah and I loved the sinus Mandela book too (a while back). Kicking off reading in the first half of the year is key for me. I also read text bookie books. At the moment I prefer non fiction. Thank you for sharing melisa

  7. thanks for sharing.

    i am an avid reader, but have lost my ability to concentrate with what i went through. i am positive that i will get my mojo back again. i love historical fiction. my favourite author, ken follett, released his new book now. he writes epic stories … i like big books … 🙂

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