Exclusive Books knows how much you value local literature. This is why they've launched their Homebru events online this June. A series of live webinars, talks and podcasts, these virtual meet and greets are sure to keep you entertained. The event is themed under the banner "meet them in their own words". This effectively brings your favourite local authors to the fore in an interactive online space, helping them to promote their work and engage with readers. In these trying times, Exclusive Books is proudly supporting the local industry and its authors, too. They've chosen books from across a spectrum of genres - from local fiction to cookery, biography, current affairs and even children's literature.

So whether you're bored at home or simply looking to expand your bookshelf of local literature, these events are a must-attend. Here's what's in store for all you bookworms:

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Digital Book Launches 

Throughout the lockdown period, Exclusive Books has brought you monthly digital book launches. Hosted over various digital platforms, these launches bring together authors and their would-be readers with fantastic hosts. As part of their Homebru events lineup, Exclusive Books will be hosting a series of local authors for digital book launches this June and July. Starting with Wandile Sihlobo's Finding Common Ground on Tuesday, 23 June 2020 at 13:00, these launches will continue until early July. You can find the full digital launch lineup on Exclusive Books' website. To find the live links to the events, simply follow Exclusive Books on Facebook or subscribe to their Fanatics newsletter.

Homebru Podcasts

As part of their Homebru celebrations, Exclusive Books is launching a new podcast series hosted by Jonathan Ancer and Dan Dewes. The brains behind the Amabookabooka podcast, these witty book lovers will be interviewing a number of local authors. Episode One of the Homebru podcast series is already available online. Tune in to listen to Jonathan interview authors, Yvonne Maphosa (Grasping at Straws) and Gail Schimmel (Two Months) about their exciting new titles. You can then get your own copies of these intriguing new fiction titles from your nearest Exclusive Books store or on their online store. Alternatively, download the Uber Eats App and get shopping for your books for delivery within a 5km radius!

When Is It?

The Homebru events calendar will run from Tuesday, 23 June 2020 - Saturday, 04 July 2020.

Where Is It?

Online via Zoom, Crowdcast and Iono.FM.

How Much Is It?

All Homebru events are free to join.

For More Information 

Follow Exclusive Books on Facebook or Instagram for updates on their events, specials and delivery services.

Details: (Tel) 0800 332 550 | [email protected]

Kids (Ages 4 - 8)

With the kids being off school for near on two months, cabin fever and boredom must be setting in. If your little ones won't be returning to school during the winter months, pick up these exciting new reads to keep them entertained.

Just Like Me by Vanessa Brantley-Newton

Introduce your little ones to the magic of poetry with this picture-poem collection by Vanessa Brantley-Newton. Writing in the voices of very different, but all beautifully unique little girls, Brantley-Newton explores themes of identity, community and the simple pleasures of a child's life. The mixed-media illustrations will capture the attention of even the most impatient young reader. Suitable for ages four to eight.

Slime by David Walliams

Bestselling children's author, David Walliams is back with another delightfully witty storybook. Slime is a "fantastically funny tale", set on the Isle of Mulch. Here live a large number of incredibly horrible adults who like nothing more than making children miserable. Who could be brave enough to stop them? Meet Ned - an extraordinary boy with a special power - Slimepower! This book is perfect for bedtime reading with the kids. But don't blame us if you get slimed!

Tweens (Ages 9 - 12) 

Tween readers exist in that awkward stage between little kid and full blown teen. Appeal to their childlike sense of adventure and their more grown up sensibility about the way the world works with these top reads.

The Kid Who Came From Space by Ross Welford 

This one is for kids who loved the humour of Wall-E, the action-adventure of Star Wars and the emotion of ET. Twelve-year-old Tammy disappears, rocking her small village in the wilds of Northumberland. Only her twin brother, Ethan, knows she is safe – and the extraordinary truth of where she is. It is a secret he must keep, or risk never seeing her again. This remarkable story of sibling bonds and intergalactic adventure is ideal for readers aged ten and older.

Diary of an Awesome Friendly Kid: Rowley Jefferson's Journal by Jeff Kinney

If your tween hasn't gotten themselves stuck into the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series yet, get them started with this latest release from number one bestselling author, Jeff Kinney. This spin-off from the original series will have your tween rolling with laughter, as Greg's best friend and sidekick, Rowley Jefferson, tells his side of the story. But will Rowley's recollection of events reveal secrets Greg never meant to share with the world?

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Teens & Young Adults (Ages 13 - 19) 

The pressures of online schooling and keeping up with their friends in lockdown is surely weighing on your teens' mind. Help them escape the 'real' world for awhile by investing in these awesome new reads from two of the literary world's best loved authors.

A Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins

The Hunger Games books are hailed as some of the most prolific young adult reads over the last decade. Let your teen (or yourself) enter the world of epic violence, corruption and courage in this prequel to the series. A Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes is set 64 years before the events of The Hunger Games trilogy. Centred around the adventures of a teenage Coriolanus Snow, who would go on to become the illustrious President Snow of Panem. This action thriller is an absolute must-read this winter.

Love Frankie by Jacqueline Wilson

Growing up is hard. Falling in love for the first time is harder. Jacqueline Wilson's new teen novel delves into the ups and downs of teenage life, love and coming out. Frankie is fourteen and growing up fast. When she begins to develop feelings for her friend, Sally, she wonders if she may be in love. She also wonders if Sally may feel the same way. Love Frankie is relevant, poignant and perfect for teens experiencing a whole bunch of scary firsts. This book is expected to release in August 2020.

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Adults (you know how old you are!) 

If you've ever complained about a lack of time for reading, now's your chance to get stuck into a few new books. It's cold outside and you aren't allowed out except for essentials or work anyway, so get busy!

The Glass Hotel by Emily St. John Mandel

A story about greed and guilt, fantasy and delusion, art and the ghosts of our pasts - what more could you ask for in a book? The Glass Hotel comes to you from the award-winning author of Station Eleven, Emily St. John Mandel. Taking place between the deck of a mysterious ship, the skyscrapers of Manhattan, and the wilderness of northern Vancouver Island, this book will take you on a journey to other worlds (which we imagine is exactly what you need right now!)

The Mirror and the Light by Hilary Mantel

English novelist, Hilary Mantel is the verified queen of historical fiction. Pick up her latest master work, The Mirror and the Light, this winter. This book is the final installment in Mantel's trilogy charting the rise and fall of Thomas Cromwell, the powerful minister in the court of King Henry VIII. If you haven't read the two previous installments, Wolf Hall and Bring Up the Bodies, get stuck in! You really have no excuse not to.

Not sure where to purchase books in lockdown? Find out here! 

Let's Get Reading! 

For those of us still under isolation at home, reading is the perfect way to pass the time. But, if you are anything like us, you've most likely devoured your pile of must-reads and are in desperate need of a book refill. That's where the Gauteng Virtual Library comes in super handy! This new online eBook, audio book and video platform is providing thousands of library users with popular fiction reads, children's titles and video content to keep entertained while under lockdown. All you need to access their collections is an active library card number. You can use an existing library card from your nearest local library or apply for a new card on the site. Once you have your card ready to go, simply browse through collections to find your perfect lockdown read.

Gauteng Virtual Library

A Parent's Saving Grace

Many parents have turned to homeschooling their children during lockdown. To help see you through until schools reopen, the Gauteng Virtual Library is stocked full with classic children's titles and new book releases. Enhance your at-home learning sessions by borrowing an eBook to read together. The virtual library's audio book collection is also wonderful for bed time or to keep the kids busy while you attend to work or chores.

Is your child a Potterhead in the making? The Gauteng Virtual Library has made the first novel of the Harry Potter series available for the month of May. Both the eBook and audio book are available without a waiting period, so you can unlock the magic right away! The library has also included the book in a variety of languages, so all can enjoy the wonder of JK Rowling's famous magical world.

Teenagers are notorious for their lack of interest in reading. Get your teen reading up a storm with the Gauteng Virtual Library's collection of age-appropriate series. From fantasy fiction to romance, this library has all a young adult reader needs to escape their world. The library also has a separate classics section, so teens can do some extracurricular reading for their English classes.

What About The Adult Readers?

The Gauteng Virtual Library caters to adult book lovers, too. Their adult collection features over 700 eBooks and audio books available to borrow. Choose your next lockdown read from their selection of thrillers, romance and bestsellers from the world's most popular authors, including Lee Child, Dan Brown and Danielle Steel. Or, get round to reading all those classic books we all claim to have read, but never have. The Gauteng Virtual Library also has a great selection of non-fiction titles, covering a range of topics. Learn a new skill in lockdown or brush up on your general knowledge using these books. You can borrow a book for up to two weeks. If the book you want to read is already borrowed out, place a hold on it and you will be notified when it becomes available.

Gauteng Virtual Library

For More Information

Visit https://gauteng.overdrive.com/ to join the Gauteng Virtual Library or visit the Apple App Store/ Google Play Store to download the Libby App - a platform that allows you to read eBooks and audio books from your local public library for free!

If you are part of a book club, send your book club name to [email protected] and suggest books that you need to review.

Happy reading! 

The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling

What’s braver than facing up to a ferocious Bengal tiger? Take your kiddies on a journey into the dense forests of India to meet Mowgli, Bagheera and Baloo, as they face up to the fearsome Sheer Khan. Rudyard Kipling’s collection of short stories are the perfect escape for young minds during this time of uncertainty. You can read the Disney version, but we recommend Kipling’s original short stories to appreciate the full wonder of Mowgli's world. 

Matilda by Roald Dahl

Another story of great bravery, Roald Dahl’s Matilda encourages children to stretch their imaginations. In a world where the adults are the enemy (besides the delightful Miss Honey, of course), Matilda teaches children to trust in their cleverness and their ability to tell good from evil. Dahl is a master storyteller, using witty poetics and rhyme to keep young minds entranced. You may want to invest in his entire collection of works once lockdown has ended, as we are sure that your little ones will be hooked in no time. 

read with the kids

Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carrol

The world may seem a little topsy-turvy to children right now. So, why not let them dive into Lewis Carrol’s upside down, mad hatter land in Alice in Wonderland? With a new obstacle at every turn, Alice’s journey into Wonderland offers children an epic adventure filled with weird and wacky characters. Alice’s bravery and smarts may also be an inspiration for young ones, as they navigate their way through this period of confusion and isolation. Make reading this classic a super fun family activity by encouraging the kids to dress up as their favourite character and to join you for a mad hatters picnic in the garden.

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S Lewis 

Children may be looking for guidance and wisdom as they struggle to come to terms with COVID-19 and its impact on their lives. Who better to look to for sage advice than C.S Lewis' great lion, Aslan, out of The Chronicles of Narnia? Set during WWII, this classic children's fantasy series follows the four Pevensie children as they travel through an old wardrobe into the magical and mystical world of Narnia. The Pevensie children's courage and determination against great odds should be excellent motivation for little ones during this challenging time. 

read with the kids

Coraline by Neil Gaiman

Neil Gaiman is a master craftsman, painting vivid worlds in which dark magic lurks. To a child's mind, COVID-19 may seem like a dark, mysterious force, as it isolates them from friends and other childhood whims. Gaiman's Coraline is the perfect antidote to fear and anxiety over things that lurk in the dark. While this book often scares adults, children approach the story with wonder and engagement, as they follow the daring Coraline into the 'Other World'. This is likely to become a book that you and the kids read over and over again, each time discovering some new flicker of Gaiman's genius.

Not sure you can pull off all the creepy, crawly voices to convey the atmosphere of Gaiman's writing? Why not let the author himself read to them? Visit Neil Gaiman's website for more information about his stories for children and for a full reading of Coraline and other books.

Audiobooks For Little Listeners

We understand that you may not always have time to sit down with the little ones to read them a story. That's where Audible.com comes in handy! Offering free streaming on a range of children's audio books until schools re-open, Audible.com is an invaluable resource to keep handy during this time, as well as on long journeys and before bedtime. Covering titles for little readers, primary school kiddies, tweens, teens and adults, Audible will have you and the kids listening, learning and imagining for hours on end.

Do your kids have any favourite books? Let us know about them in the comments section below!

Skoobs Theatre Of Books

Skoobs is a magical world of books. Positioned in the heart of Montecasino, this bookstore offers enough literature to satisfy any book worm. This treasure trove offers not only a theatre of books but a coffee shop to keep moms and dads busy while the kids explore the amazing land of stories. This bookstore is a definite must-visit for kids and adults alike.

Kids'Book Spots

Bridge Books

Bridge Books is filled with fictional stories about Africa. Offering books for kids and adults, you won't be disappointed. Stocking both new and second-hand books, this store has books for any budget. Bridge Books also hosts events, such as writing workshops to motivate and encourage readers and writers. Bridge Books also offers a coffee shop, so you can enjoy a drink while your little one goes on an African adventure

Kids'Book Spots

Readers Warehouse

Readers Warehouse is a little heaven for all the little ones, and parents too. They have an array of children's books, from old tales to the latest mystical stories. Their wide selection of genres is great for the little ones to explore and includes everything from educational books to fairy-tales. Readers Warehouse has a few stores around the city, so check them out to find your nearest branch.

Readers Warehouse

Tales & Fables

Tales & Fables offers a wide range of new children's books that teach and inspire creative minds, as well as challenge your child's thinking. Based in a community-driven suburb, the owners, a husband and wife team, have worked hard to ensure that the environment is perfect for all the little bookworms. This bookshop is highly recommended by the regulars. Don't worry, there's also a load of amazing reads for the parents, too.

Kids'Book Spots

Bargain Books

Bargain Books is one of the best bookshops around, crowned SA Bookseller of the Year 2011, 2013, 2014, 2017 and 2018. This store is definitely a book haven. Bargain Books has a wide range of offerings, including exclusive picks for both you and the little ones. Break away into a world of books! Bargain Books has several branches scattered across Joburg, so there's no excuse not to visit.

Kids'Book Spots

Exclusive Books

Exclusive Books is one of the first stores that comes to mind when looking for books. Offering a kids area with bean bags, tables and shaped seating, this is a must for any book lover. Their range of books is huge with a wide variety of genres, including fairy-tales, fantasy and non-fiction, among others. The Hyde Park branch is one of our favourites and offers a world of fantasy.

Kids'Book Spots

The Crazy Store

The Crazy Store is known for having loads of amazing trinkets, knickknacks and toys for kids. But did you know that they also stock books for kids? The Crazy Store has books in both English and Afrikaans and their books range from foundation phase books to helpful learning guides. So, bring along your children the next time you pop by The Crazy Store.

Children's Bookshops

Do you know of any other children's bookstores in Joburg? Let us know about them in the comments section below!

Books Galore Linden

Books Galore specialise in used books, offering paperbacks at almost half the usual retail price. They also stock new children's books and collectables. Books Galore in Linden offers a vast collection of unique books, worthy of making their home on your bookshelf. Bring the whole family along to find themselves the perfect secondhand book. Kiddies can also join their book club for free. Offering discounts on the latest children's books, birthday vouchers and free sticker books, avid young readers will love this club.

Details: 56, 4th Avenue, Linden, Randburg, Johannesburg | (+27) 011 888 0760

Booklovers Paradise

Booklovers Paradise are experts in out-of-print and collectable books. They do not stock 'run of the mill' titles, only the most interesting and rare finds. If you are looking for something not usually found at retail bookstores, then visit Booklovers Paradise. Their passion for literature shines through in their service and knowledge of their fiction and non-fiction books. Inquire with them to find a long lost book or special editions.

Details: Northcliff Shopping Center, Cnr Beyers Naude and Milner Road, Northcliff, Johannesburg | +2711 888 3280 or +27 61 233 2936 | [email protected]

The Corner Shop

The Corner Shop on 4th Avenue is a treasure trove of trinkets, ornaments, art and books. We discovered it while waiting for a table across the street at the much-loved Whippet Coffee. Begin your book hunt on the pavement outside the store, where they set up trestle tables topped with timeless classics. Then follow the scent of old paperbacks inside, where they have an upstairs reading corner. Here, you can also find teen novels, dramas, plays and poetry. Sit back and page through your finds on their very brightly coloured furniture. The books at the Corner Shop are sometimes discounted too, so make sure to bring a bag or two with you.

Details: Shop 32, Menal Place, Corner 4th Avenue and 7th Street, Linden, Randburg, Johannesburg | 011 782 7496

Linden bookstores

Tales and Fables cc

Tales and Fables is another must-visit Linden secondhand bookstore. Located at Victory Park Centre, the store offers more than just a shopping trip. Rather, they pride themselves on giving their customers a true experience. Tales and Fables also buy secondhand books, so the next time you find your bookshelves looking a little too heavy, take them here. A book is never really owned anyway, but should be passed on to spread joy to other readers!

Details: Victory Park Shopping Centre, Rustenburg Rd & 2nd Ave, Victory Park, Johannesburg | (011) 782 3660 or 084 919 1745 | [email protected]

Bookdealers of Greenside

Bookdealers has been trading in out-of-print, collectable and used books for 30 years. Their collections are extensive, covering everything from history, to psychology, travel, self help and music. Their classics section is equally impressive, boasting a number of hard to find novels and plays. Bookdealers of Greenside is a student hot spot, supplying affordable set books and new novels to read during the holidays. Their Greenside store is one of the larger branches, so visit them as soon as you can.

Details: 39 Gleneagles Road, Greenside, Johannesburg | 011 782 1101 | [email protected]

Serial Thrillers

Serial Thrillers is just outside Linden, at the Johannesburg Botanical Gardens in Emmarentia. This relatively new bookstore is a wonder world of used books, comic books, vinyl and other curios. The owner is very eager to help new customers find exactly what they are looking for, and has a vast knowledge of classic and contemporary literature. From Enid Blyton to the Adventures of Tintin, there are a number of wonderful children's titles to be found at Serial Thrillers. Adults will find the likes of Stephen King, James Patterson and Tess Gerritsen on the shelves, as well as modern classics to keep them entertained. Stop by here if you are in search of an extra special gift for a book lover.

Details: Olifants Rd, Emmarentia, Johannesburg | 061 448 2933

Do you know of any other bookstores worth visiting in Linden? Let us know about them!

Exclusive Books

If it's beautifully bound classic books you are looking for, then head out to your nearest Exclusive Books. Their stores offer both Classic titles and Neo-Classic novels from the world's favourite authors. From Edgar Allan Poe, to the Brontës, Jane Austen, Sylvia Plath and Kurt Vonnegut. You can find almost any genre of classic here too. So, whether you are a horror fanatic, romance lover or sci-fi fundi, there should be a classic for you. This is the perfect place to get lost in a world of words and poetry.

Click here for more information.

Kalahari Books

Kalahari Books in Orange Grove specialise in out of print fiction and non-fiction titles. This Victorian-style library-cum-book club offers avid readers the opportunity to pick up long-lost novels, plays and collectibles. Their main passion is theatre, poetry and classic literature, as well as bringing you titles by forgotten popular authors, including the likes of George Bernard Shaw. If you are looking for something really special to gift a book loving friend or family member, then Kalahari Books should be your first stop.

Click here for more information.

classic books

Estoril Books

Estroil Books has three branches located in Johannesburg. Our favourite is the newly relaunched store at Fourways Mall. The most extensive and well-organised of the branches, this is a book lover's paradise. Their classic books section is wide ranging, stocking not just the most popular novels by famous authors, but entire collections of their work and a few obscure titles. Estoril Books is also relatively one of the most affordable mainstream retailers for classic novels. They often host half-off sales too, so be sure to pop by on your next trip to Fourways Mall.

Click here for more information.

Bookdealers

Bookdealers have been gifting readers with collectible editions for over 30 years. With five stores around the city, they are easily accessible. Plus, their staff are always willing to lend their knowledge in the search for that perfect classic. Bookdealers also stocks a couple of rare inscribed copies of non-fiction and fiction titles, especially by South African authors. This is the book store to visit for students too, as you can find set works at bargain prices, covering a range of subjects including, poetry, drama, English literature, psychology and history. So, what are you waiting for? Give Bookdealers a call!

Click here for more information.

Bargain Books

Another great book store for classic books at discount prices is Bargain Books. Many a time we have scooped up three titles for the price of two at their Greenstone store. Mostly available in paperback editions, these classics may not look the prettiest, but it's the magnificence of words and story that we are after. Bargain Books is also an excellent kiddies book store to let the little ones browse around. Catering to new parents, toddlers and tweens, this is the ideal environment to start introducing classic literature to the kids (besides the library, of course).

Click here for more information.

Skoobs Theatre of Books

Now, this is a book lover's ultimate fantasy. Two floors of literary delights - from children's classics to  biographies about your favourite musicians and everything in between. Skoobs Theatre of Books lives up to its name in every respect. Find yourself a quiet corner upstairs on one of their comfy reading chairs and dive into a world very different from the one we live in. English ladies in waiting, swashbuckling pirates, talking daisies and a mischievous boy who never grows up await you. But, the adventure doesn't end there. Tuck into a slice of decadent rainbow cake at the Skoobs Cafe or sip on a glass of Merlot at the upstairs champagne bar. Be warned, you may never want to leave.

Click here for more information.

Books Galore

Books Galore deals in second-hand fiction titles for children and adults. Get kiddies books for up to 50% off here, all the while stockpiling your shopping baskets with rare and unique used books. Books Galore also has a children's book club which is free to join for kids of any age. Not only do the little readers in the making receive discounts on their favourite bedtime story books, but they also get Crocky Club Stickers to add to their collections, free activity books, a birthday gift voucher and free delivery when you order three or more books online.

Their range of adult books include must-have South African collectibles. While most of these are non-fiction titles, they are still worth scouring over. Gardeners will be particularly enamored with helpful catalogues on South African species and how and where to plant them.

Click here for more information.

Serial Thrillers

Serial Thrillers is relatively new to the book dealing scene, however they sure have made a good impression on us. Situated at the Johannesburg Botanical Gardens in Emmarentia, this knickknack store has a collection of true literary relics. Here you can find modern classics such as Vladimir Nabokov's Lolita, Hemmingway's The Old Man and the Sea and short stories by the ever eloquent F. Scott Fitzgerald.

But, what makes this store extra special is their collection of comic books. Indulge your inner child with first edition Archie comics, Tintin's Adventures and Asterix and Obelix. There are also the most adorable figurines to go with your new comic collection. Who wouldn't want a mini Tintin anyway? Give this start up book store some love and visit them as soon as possible.

Click here for more information.

classic books

Do you know of any other great book stores that sell classics in Joburg? Let us know about them! 

What Is It?

Exclusive Books invite you to their annual Warehouse Sale at their head office in Kramerville, Sandton. This five-day book event is a must on the calendars of Joburg book lovers. All books are priced at R35, including children's books, paperbacks and hardback copies. If you are an avid reader or just a person who loves to browse through aisle upon aisle of books, you cannot miss out on this. There is no limit as to how many books you are allowed to purchase, so bring along your book bags. There will be credit card facilities available as well. Fanatics members are welcome to swipe their cards to earn points towards their next purchase.

When Is It?

Saturday, 27 April 2019 – Wednesday, 1 May 2019 from 08:00 – 16:00 each day.

Where Is It?

Exclusive Books Head Office, 31 Commerce Crescent, Kramerville, Sandton, Johannesburg.

How Much Is It?

Entrance to the warehouse is free.

For More Information

For more information, visit Exclusive Books Facebook page or their website.

Contact them on 011 798 0111 or via email at [email protected]

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