Children of the Sands by Pieter Scholtz
01 Aug 2011
Children of the Sands is a tale about the Kalahari desert, the Kgalagadi, and about the creatures who inhabit it, especially one little meerkat named Twinkle.
The tale revolves around two young people, Lindiwe and Rudi and their battle for survival in the harsh Kalahari desert, after the twin-engined Cessna 414 in which they are passengers, crashes en route to Windhoek.
They encounter a number of weird and wonderful creatures; none more weird and wonderful than Twinkle the meerkat, whose cheek and charm are utterly disarming.
For Lindiwe and Rudi, their imaginings become a reality when they encounter other creatures with alarmingly human characteristics. These include the ghoulish Signior Voltoré, the Vulture; Ko-Bra, the cool-dude yellow Cobra who speaks in rap; and Sticky Beak, the Bateleur eagle who performs aerial acrobatics.
The creatures and predators who appear in the story are identified in a ‘Fact File’ at the end of the book.
The story is suitable for age, 9 – 12 years and the young at heart.
Date of Publication: August 2011
Publisher: Horus Publications
Reviews: “The meerkat is one of the most appealing creatures of southern Africa. Its upright stance and pert attentiveness make it almost human.
In this latest of his books and plays directed at young readers, Pieter Scholtz, former professor of drama at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, brings the affinity even closer.
Two schoolchildren of different ethnic extraction are exhorted by their teacher in Swaziland to observe all that is about them, to use their imagination.
What happens as they are cast away together in the arid wastes of the Kalahari desert, and they make the acquaintance of the creatures of the sand dunes, takes imagination to the very limit.
The story has high adventure and a lot of humorous characterisation, but to explain further would be to give away the plot. It will be highly appreciated by the pre-teens, as it was by a post-teen such as myself.” – Graham Linscott, The Mercury on Friday, August 19, 2011