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Zacht als Staal

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4.03  ·  Rating details ·  35 ratings  ·  11 reviews
Een moeder reist van het Zuid-Afrikaanse platteland naar Amsterdam om het lichaam van haar zoon op te halen. Gedreven door plichtsbesef en schuldgevoel onderneemt ze een bizarre zoektocht door een voor haar onbekende wereld om haar zoons leven en dood te reconstrueren.

Bijgestaan door een cokedealende rasta weet ze een bonte stoet vrienden en bekenden te achterhalen – knipn
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Paperback, 1, 208 pages
Published 2010 by Nijgh & van Ditmar
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 ·  35 ratings  ·  11 reviews


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Nerine Dorman
Jul 26, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Where do I even begin? This is also going onto my list of top reads for 2013. Very complex thoughts surrounding this novel, which is pertinent whether you are gay or straight.

FULL REVIEW (appeared in September 2013 issue of The Pink Tongue)

It’s not often that a novel lands on my desk that I feel everyone should make an effort to read, but The Big Stick is definitely one of them. Richard de Nooy draws us into Amsterdam of the early 1980s, before the Aids epidemic cast its pall over the various co
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Nicolas Chinardet
An enjoyable read with some strong, interesting characters. Although the author is straight he gives a credible insight the gay subculture.

Not being familiar with either South Africa or Amsterdam I felt I missed out on the finer elements of the culture clash depicted in the book which obviously constitutes a major part of it but that didn't distract from the overall enjoyment.

An incredibly broad and colourful canvas for such a short book.
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Eddie Clarke
Jan 18, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this book - the second I've read in 6 months to look at the SADF's forced 'treatment' of gay conscripts, set around the time I was a conscript in Pretoria. Although De Nooy sensibly keeps this to a brief episode tangentially explored : a ploy which seems to add to its horrific power.

De Nooy's style is energetic and vivacious, and he tells his story via a number of 1st person accounts, so gradually a full picture of Staal and his tragedy emerges. Nevertheless, there are many lighter mom
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Rodeweeks
May 03, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library
A humorously sad story. It shows the struggle of a homosexual in a small town in South Africa and the happiness he found at last when he is accepted in Amsterdam in the Netherlands. I felt deeply sad while reading the book, shaking my head in sorrow because of the way people treat other people just because they are different or do not want to be the same as everyone else.
Ojon van Strijland
May 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
het waren andere tijden...
Jayne Bauling
May 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a brilliant book, one of my best reads so far this year.

Funny and tragic, this is the story of Staal who grew up in Zeerust in South Africa in the 1980s. Being gay in such an environment, he suffered misunderstanding and various abuses, inluding a dose of the SADF's notorious aversion therapy, before being exiled to Holland. Set in Amsterdam around 1986, the book brings the gay scene there to vivid life. Staal's almost immediate sense of having found his pack is deeply touching.

Staal himse
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Richard
Dec 22, 2011 added it  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
My latest novel is finally available in English in South Africa

You can read an excerpt here.

Readers outside South Africa can order it here (or by sending an email to lanore@jacana.co.za).

I'll be posting the latest reviews here.

Wishing you pleasant reading!



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Kerry Gordon
Jul 08, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition


I loved the collision of cultures and lifestyles as the story weaves through Amsterdam.
Tiah
What one would expect from Richard: comic wit cloaked in deep tragedy. Or Quentin Tarantino without the guns.
Amanda Strydom
Mar 27, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Beautifully written. A perfect mix of comic wit and heart-aching tragedy.
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Sep 05, 2010 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
Shelves: dutch
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Richard de Nooy (1965) grew up in Johannesburg, but has lived in Amsterdam for the past 30 years. He writes his novels in English and Dutch.

His latest novel, Van kleine helden, was published in Dutch in the Netherlands in May 2017. He is currently working on the English edition.

De Nooy's first novel, Six Fang Marks and a Tetanus Shot (Jacana, 2007), won the University of Johannesburg Prize for Bes
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