Wessel Ebersohn is an internationally published South African novelist and thriller author. Wessel Ebersohn was born in Cape Town, South Africa in 1940. He went to school in Cape Town and Somerset West.
At the age of 15 he left school to become a pupil telecommunications technician. His first book to be published was A LONELY PLACE TO DIE, the first Yudel Gordon Novel, in 1977. The rest of novels have followed in the years since then.
In 1963 he married Miriam. They have three children, six grandchildren and two great grandchildren.
In 1995 with the arrival of the democratic dispensation in South Africa, he and Miriam launched Succeed magazine, a magazine aimed at assisting small business. For 18 years he was its editor and Miriam its publisher. For the past six years they have lived on a beautiful small-holding on the edge of the South African bushveld.
Wessel Ebersohn, on his writing: “I have always written. At the age of eight I tried my hand at my first novel, based on a football match. It was long on action, but short on plot or characterisation. It took an apprenticeship of another 31 years before I saw a novel in print. At present I am producing one a year.
“My work has been particularly influenced by the great American novelists: Steinbeck, Hemingway, Hawthorne and James among them. But my subject matter comes from my life experiences and the continuing drama of my own country and continent.”
Wessel Ebersohn has been published in South Africa, the USA, the UK and most European countries.
He is a writer of both general novels and thrillers. His favourite among his own novels is THE CLASSIFIER, published in 2011. The book is a story of teenage love between Chris, a white boy, and Ruthie, a coloured girl. It is set in the 1970s when apartheid was at its height. Their relationship is complicated by two factors: all sexual contact between the races is illegal, but also the boy’s father is head of the race classification office in the province they live in. The book is rooted in Miriam’s own personal contact with the race classification system in Durban in the 1970s.
After a hiatus of almost ten years, Wessel Ebersohn returns with DELUGE, a new Yudel Gordon thriller. In DELUGE the eccentric prisons psychologist is summoned to do the impossible: extract information from a severely tortured and unconscious prisoner who’s planted explosives in a hostel dormitory packed with school children. It appears to be an open and shut case in which a disaffected white supremacist is out for revenge and the settling of scores. All our intrepid prison psychologist has to do is find the obvious target and save the children or so it seems.
But for Yudel, there’s something more going on here, a pattern that looks and feels unsettlingly familiar; a pattern that triggers memories of one deluge after another in a quiet town in the Kalahari in 1994 on the brink of democracy; a deluge unleashed by the raging flood waters of a mighty river amidst the mayhem and murder of a police officer and cries for justice from all sides.
In this complex story of memory and remembering Yudel Gordon does more than prevent a crime or bring criminals to justice, he is affected by and bears witness to the actions and motivations of individuals and communities against the backdrop of an unjust past and a hopeful present and future.