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Endings and Beginnings

4.13  ·  Rating details ·  263 Ratings  ·  64 Reviews
Redi Tlhabi, warm-hearted, charismatic and loved throughout South Africa is as well known for her 702 and Cape Talk radio show as she is for her TV performances and Sunday Times newspaper column. In this astonishing debut, Endings and beginnings, she makes the painful journey back to her death-marred childhood, a journey in which she eventually finds peace and allows her d ...more
Paperback, 224 pages
Published October 1st 2012 by Jacana Media
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Ray Hartley
Mar 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Redi Thlabi has won the Sunday Times Alan Paton award for this brilliant book. It tells the story of her ambivalence towards a gangster - she later finds out a murderer and a rapist - who shows her kindness when she is a child. He inexplicably protects her from the neighbourhood sexual predators and by the time she finds out the true depth of his depravity, she struggles to banish her feelings. When he is murdered, she sets out to discover his life story. As the book solves this tragic jigsaw pu ...more
Barry Gilder
Feb 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: south-africa
When I first picked up Redi's book I assumed it was about her. A few pages in I concluded it was about Mabegzo, her childhood gangster friend. But once well into the book it became clear that the heroine of 'Endings and Beginnings' is Imelda, Mabegzo's mother - gang-raped and impregnated as a teenager, exiled to Lesotho by shamed parents, and then deprived of her son for the rest of his short, painful life.

What strikes me as a central theme of this story is the way in which the mores of religion
Dec 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
I totally enjoyed reading this book. It is beautifully written and it is such a powerful story about healing. I am amazed at the impact that Mabegzo had on Redi, that she would want closure so many years after his death. Redi humanises Mabegzo by sharing with us his pain,his love for her and his hopes (of going to live with his mother). I was especially touched by his mother's journey after her rape and could not help but find myself hating Nkgono for how she treated Mme Imelda.

This book took m
Julia Grundling
Jan 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
this book touched me to the core. i had to pause last night and didn't want to read any further before going to bed, as i had so much in my head and simply couldn't put more in. i grabbed a jeffrey archer book to just get the thoughts out of my head before going to sleep, otherwise i wouldn't have been able to sleep.

redi tlhabi is a well known radio talk show presenter in south africa - here is a link where it was announced that a movie may be made of this book:
Dec 17, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: not-my-copy
What a riveting read. Chapter 1 was too narrative and flat for me. Rising action in the subsequent chapters were very exciting. The story is well written and the author has great empathy. I loved Mabegzo. Though he was a ruthless criminal, he was full of love for Redi and her love and acceptance of him, made him want to be a better man in a misguided kind of way.

The plot was very engaging and tugged at my heart's strings. Redi is a vivid writer who pays attention to details. Having grown up in S
Debbie Yannakakis
Dec 14, 2012 rated it it was amazing
With this book, the reader soon realizes that the author has a special gift for empathy. She also has a backbone of titanium as she doesn't relinquish her quest for understanding and healing in the face of societal pressure. Casting light on a damaged society forces the reader to examine his/her own views regarding gender issues, parenting and family violence, as well as physical or emotional abuse. With our horrendous statistics of crime and violence, Redi Tlhabi exposes many layers of damage i ...more
Mar 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
Whenever I am in South Africa I love listening to Redi's radio shows. she comes across as empathetic and grounded and very fair in her handling of contentious issues. with this book she unravels a complicated web of shame, subterfuge and family protocols in an attempt to understand Mabegzo, the unwanted child of rape who becomes a criminal. This is a case of truth being stranger than fiction and the story grips to the end. In bringing to light Mabegzo's story, Redi foregrounds the real problem o ...more
Diane Brown
Mar 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
A beautiful read -- A story about life growing up in the townships in apartheid South Africa. Addresses violence and the reality and risk of growing up as a black South African, The value and role of women is in the spotlight throughout the book, as she relates the story of a gangster's life and the unlikely friendship that the author develops with him.

Violence has been a feature of this society for such a long time and it is great to see books dealing with this topic

Well written and relevant
Mpho Bernadette
Jan 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I loved the book and read it in two days. Sometimes I felt that there was no flow to the story. She would touch on an incident or subject, let it go when she thinks of something else and then go back to the topic. I'm still a bit confused about the nature of her relationship with Mabegzo but she really is one of a kind. To love a person who was despised by everyone must not have been easy. Her story taught me that the events that took place in our lives shape who we are. I did not have a Mabegzo ...more
Marta Mendes
Jan 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I have always admired Redi's gutsy interviewing skills. Her almost fearless ability to focus on the relevant issues, issues that impact the very fabric of South African life. After reading this book, I admire her even more. I couldn't put this book down because it is set in Joburg, my home town, and it highlighted issues which are so important to me. The plight of woman and children in townships, the importance of open, loving families, about the power and influence of adults on the youth. It i ...more
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