Best Book Publishers UK | Austin Macauley Publishers

By: Robin Whales

A Brief Splash of Joy and Other Stories

Pages: 160 Ratings:
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Transport yourself to the heart of South and Central Africa with this collection of short stories about ordinary people. Aged between 18 and 50, these characters find themselves entangled in situations that lead to tragedy, dishonesty, and betrayal.

In one story, an older man takes advantage of his publishing manager friend’s goodwill and sells a business sponsored by the manager behind his back for his own profit. In another story, an unpopular man in a company becomes a ‘hero’ after being attacked on a staff fishing trip on the Zambezi River, leading to his promotion and a change in attitude towards those who invited him on the trip.

Other stories follow the desires of ordinary people, such as a man who searches for a married woman he met years ago in Malawi, a successful business owner who starts doing good things for others before taking a wrong turn, and an 18-year-old schoolboy who falls for his friend’s girlfriend.

Each story takes you on a journey of human nature and the consequences of our actions. Tragedy, dishonesty, and back-stabbing await in this compelling collection set against the backdrop of South and Central Africa.

Robin Whales was born in Zambia in 1931. When his father died, his mother and her three children moved to Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. He attended Milton School and then St Patrick’s in Kimberley. After matriculating, he graduated with a BA from the University of Cape Town.


He taught at Milton; married Dawn Norvall, a farmer’s daughter and a teacher; and later moved to Johannesburg to work in publishing. They opened and ran a publishing-related business before moving to Knysna (1999) where his wife ran a self-catering business.


They retired to Kronendal Village, Cape Town, in 2016. His wife died in September 2022.


Robin Whales continued to contribute to the literary world until his peaceful passing in February 2023.

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