The Hum of the Sun to be published in German

Kwela Books (an imprint of NB Publishers) is happy to share the news that The Hum of the Sun by Kirsten Miller will soon be available in German, to be published by Basel-based publisher Baobab Books.
Sonja Matheson, Publisher at Baobab Books, said: “As a reader, I fell in love with this book on page one. As a publisher, I knew that this is the book I have been waiting for a long time way before I’d reached to the last page. I am truly impressed by what Kirsten Miller has achieved with this novel. It is exceptional story in many ways, and it is an honour to present this book to the German readers.”
The book will be published under the title Hörst du, wie der Himmel singt? with the release date set for 1 September 2021. More information can be found on the Baobab Books website or by contacting them directly at info@baobabbooks.ch.
Miller is excited about this turn of events. “I always get a thrill when South African literature reaches an international audience, and now that it is one of my own books, I am doubly-delighted. I have been so grateful for the care, sensitivity and depth applied to the adaption of the book for a German audience by those at Baobab, and am indebted to those at Kwela Books in South Africa for their belief in and support for this novel. I’m very excited that these particular characters will now continue their amazing journey in German.”.
“We’re absolutely delighted that this captivating story will be reaching a wider audience,” said Carolyn Meads, Publisher at Kwela Books. “Though The Hum of the Sun is set in South Africa, it deals with universal themes of neurodiversity, acceptance, familial bonds and brotherly love. Kirsten Miller is a world-class writer.”
With The Hum of the Sun Kirsten Miller expands on autism narratives in fiction by presenting the perspective of a non-verbal character. The manuscript won the 2016 Wilbur and Nino Smith Foundation’s Prize for Best Unpublished Manuscript, and was on the International Dublin Literary Award 2020 longlist – one of only four South African books that made the list. Furthermore, it won the 2019 Aziz Hassim Literary Prize, was shortlisted for the 2019 Herman Charles Bosman Prize and longlisted for the 2019 Sunday Times Fiction Prize.
This beautiful, lyrical Bildungsroman of brotherly love received a lot of praise locally:
“Easily one of the most exquisitely written novels I have ever read. Heartbreaking, joyful, and suffused with love.” – Jennifer Crwys-Williams
“A beautifully told tale that penetrates the heart.” – Tiah Beautement
“The characters are complex and beautifully crafted. Ash and Zuko carried the burdensome story well and my heart heaved for them every step of the way.” – Sue Nyathi

About the book:
After burying their sister and mother, two brothers embark on a journey to the city in search of their only remaining family. On the brink of manhood, Ash must protect eight-year-old Zuko, who does not speak, his words stuck somewhere between his thoughts and his mouth. But Zuko, enchanted by nature and the rhythms of walking, seems more interested in the patterns he sees in the clouds, the stones, and the arc of the light, than in when their journey will end.
When Ash finally realizes who he is – and who he is not – he must make his first authentic choice as an independent being. But can he offer his brother the same freedom, the same choices, in the face of those who have already mapped out Zuko’s future?
Beautifully written, this is a poignant, big-hearted story that is sure to linger in the reader’s mind.

Comfortable Skin – a new novel

I am happy that I’ve signed another contract with Kwela Books, who will publish my next novel Comfortable Skin in 2020, under the new title All That is LeftComfortable Skin was written in 2008. In 2009 it was accepted by a Cape Town publisher, but the down-turn in the economy at the time forced the publishing house to withdraw the offer. The manuscript gathered dust for some years, until it won the Minara Aziz Hassim Literary Award in Durban in 2018. I’m looking forward to publisher Carolyn Meads of Kwela working her magic and making it into a real book.