Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Jozi Gold: MediaUpdate; 05 March 2014

Leanne Hunt's debut novel delves into the lives of the well-to-do

Published: 5 March 2014

What is special about this debut novel is not its characters, although they are well-rounded and deliciously real. It’s not the fact that on the surface it is a gentle meander through the lives of well-to-do South Africans living in the affluent suburbs of Johannesburg, while underneath it unlocks a world of human desire, anxiety and need.

Leanne Hunt's debut novel delves into the lives of the well-to-do
By Abbygail Zwane

Nor is it because it is set in the midst of the 2010 Soccer World Cup. It’s that the author of Jozi Gold, is in fact blind. You would never tell by reading the novel. Her descriptions, sense of space and place are astute and deliberate, taking the reader on a fast-paced journey through the lives of characters who are all connected.

The story revolves around Jeannie, a slightly overweight housewife with a good-looking husband, two sons and a bossy sister. In her mind she has the perfect life: a beautiful house and a good marriage. Until her sister arrives from Australia. Jeannie discovers that her husband is having an affair with a sassy radio journalist. Her world falls apart but her life takes an unexpected and satisfying twist. It turns out that it is not only Jeannie’s husband who has secrets.

The author Leanne Hunt describes her journey as follows: “In writing Jozi Gold, I was particularly interested in the networks which connect people, and how forces within those networks exert subtle, often unexpected pressure. The novel grew out of a picture I had in my mind of various individuals who were unknown to each other but linked by their context and their relationships to one man. What started out as a thought experiment ended up as a fast-paced, complex romantic drama. The characters came alive for me and drove the action forward in a way I could scarcely foresee. In fact, it came as a real surprise that the outcome was so deliciously satisfying.”

Jozi Gold will appeal to readers who enjoy romantic dramas and those in need of a fresh perspective as they approach mid-life.

Jozi Gold is available from Books Galore, Exclusive Books and

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