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South African Battles describes 36 battles spread over five centuries. These are not the well-trodden battlefields of standard histories, but generally lesser-known ones. Some were of critical importance, while some were infinitely curious.

Who, for instance, has heard of the battles of Nakob, Middelpos, Mome Gorge or Mushroom Valley? Who knows about the four black women that Bartolomeu Dias brought with him on his pioneering voyage of exploration? Who knows that there was a significant battle in what is now the Kruger National Park in 1725? Who knows about the military episode where not a shot was fired but which brought South Africa into the Great War? Who knows that Germany once invaded South Africa?

Written in a light, humorous and personal style, each chapter is self-contained, like a short story. They can be read one a night, and mulled over next day with the promise of further enjoyment to come. South African Battles is an ideal bedside book, as well as an engaging travel companion. But there is also a twist in the tale at the end. Caveat lector, or lectrix!

Paperback 415 pages. Published August 2013