I don’t know why my publisher, Pan Macmillan, decided that I needed two launches for my book – Incognito – The Memoirs of Ben Trovato – in the space of a week in Cape Town. Perhaps they wanted a backup in case one of the launches had to be aborted like a cheap North Korean nuclear missile test.
Both events were wildly successful. Then again, I also think World War Two was wildly successful.
The man given the onerous task of interrogating me at Kalk Bay Books on 28th May and again at the Book Lounge on 5th June was the legendary troubadour and troublemaker, Roger Lucey.
The denizens of the Deep South emerged from their lairs to guzzle wine and beer at Kalk Bay Books, while the urbanistas did the same a week later at the Book Lounge, conveniently located across the road from the depraved Kimberley Hotel.
Thierry Cassuto – Maestro Geppetto of Puppet Nation ZA – had his contacts in the underworld deliver six bottles of Jameson’s to the Book Lounge, where shooters were shot and laughs were had.
Bella, who features in Incognito, stepped in to lend a hand. She said the only reason she let me live was because I had made myself look far worse than her in the book and she felt sorry for me.
Making my first public appearances after writing as Ben Trovato for over a decade was both terrifying and exhilarating. Apparently I have to do it all over again – twice – at the South African Book Fair next weekend. It’s enough to make one give up writing altogether.
Here are some photos from both launches.