Everyone is waiting for rain...
See how things turn out for the local people and animals when the rain finally arrives in the drought-stricken district of Riemvasmaak.
Invigorating verse and joyful inspiration from indigenous cultures, by South African artist and writer Nicolaas Maritz.
The United Nations Decade of Indigenous Languages will be launched in February 2022.
PENDORING 2021 SILVER AWARD WINNER
WHITE RAVEN 2022
"I loved this book, of the coming of the rain in Riemvasmaak, with its wonderful bold illustrations and joyous actions and rhythm which could enhance a dramatisation in the classroom. The 4 local languages are relevant to the community of Riemvasmaak and SA readers, but one comment in the english incorporates Afrikaans such as vlei, meerkat, ouvolk, which could have been avoided. If this was deliberate, because the word has become accepted in English, maybe a glossary for these terms would help a non-SA person?" ~ Review by Marj Brown for the IBBY Honour list 2024
"The verbal text in this extraordinary book is a narrative as well as lyrical and dramatic poem about the day the rain came to Riemvasmaak, a place in the Kalahari Desert in the Northern Cape. The reason for the importance of the poem being in four languages, might be that Riemvasmaak has a history in which people who spoke several languages met in difficult circumstances separated, but with the coming of the rain are implicitly reunited in peace in this narrative poem. The poetic style of the English and Afrikaans versions is in some respects similar to that of poems of several languages of the region. The poems are in free rhyme and polyrhythmic. What is remarkable about the pictures, which cannot so much be considered as illustrations of the poems, but rather as visual impressions of the rain, is that many of them are mirror images or double mirror images. Other significant aspects of the illustrations are that numerous types of animals are depicted. The title of the book – Rain Beast -- and cover page focus on several animals, but as the narrative unfolds, the cloud snake and the water snake might be two of the most important of the beasts. This may indicate that several Southern African groups are involved in the rain dance. Although coming from different origins, it is the landscape that unites the people. Geometric images unite different worlds, such as the cosmic, the spiritual, the communal and the personal with each other. It is indeed the landscape and the coming of the rain and the rain beast that have a most significant meaning. The landscape is a permanent source of identity." ~ Review by Betsie van der Westhuizen for the IBBY Honour List 2024
Illustrator: Illustrator: Nicolaas Maritz
Language: Multilingual - English / IsiXhosa / Hai||om / Afrikaans
ISBN: 978-1-4856-3027-2, July 2021, 240x290mm, 64 pages
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