Download A Rainbow in the Night: The Tumultuous Birth of South Africa Audiobook

A Rainbow in the Night: The Tumultuous Birth of South Africa Audiobook, by Dominique Lapierre Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Dominique Lapierre Narrator: Stefan Rudnicki Publisher: Blackstone Publishing Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: November 2009 ISBN: 9781481568791
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (144 ratings) (rate this audio book)
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In 1652, a small group of Dutch farmers landed on the southernmost tip of Africa. Sent by the powerful Dutch India Company, their mission was simply to grow vegetables and supply ships rounding the cape. The colonists, however, were convinced by their strict Calvinist faith that they were among God’s “elect,” chosen to rule over the continent. Their bloody, ferocious, and fervent saga would culminate three centuries later in one of the greatest tragedies of history: the establishment of a racist regime in which a white minority would subjugate and victimize millions of blacks—apartheid. This poisonous system would only end with the liberation of one of the moral giants of our time, Nelson Mandela.

An international bestseller that has been praised throughout Europe, A Rainbow in the Night is Dominique Lapierre’s epic account of South Africa’s tragic history and the heroic men and women—famous and obscure, white and black, European and African—who have, with their blood and tears, brought to life the country that is today known as the Rainbow Nation.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “South Africa’s tragic apartheid history is vividly recounted…Lapierre has a knack for bringing history alive…[He] has a good story to tell, and he is adept at infusing it with drama aplenty…Lapierre has dug wide and deep.”

    Los Angeles Times

  • “Lapierre takes a cinematic approach to history, adorning key events with narrative reconstructions and liberal swathes of high drama…Prepare to be swept away.”

    Johannesburg Times

  • “Dominique Lapierre raises the curtain on the history of South Africa…A sublime epic full of terrible dramas.”

    Le Point magazine (France)

  • “History by a man who knows how to write history.”

    San Diego Union Tribune

  • “Harrowing…dramatic…absorbing.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Narrator Stefan Rudnicki’s deep voice rumbles with an announcer-like resonance as he reads the encyclopedic introduction without animation. However, with the appearance of important characters like black activist Nelson Mandela and white supporter Helen Lieberman, Rudnicki becomes more charismatic. Delivering the author’s inspiring narrative, his voice portrays the opposing emotions of both the inhuman cruelties experienced by the downtrodden and the proud excitement of Dr. Christiaan Barnard’s first-ever heart transplant. Because of the universality of ethnic struggle, this audiobook would make an excellent resource for students of human rights.”


  • “A concise, up-to-date account that beautifully translates to audio.”

    Library Journal (starred review)

  • “A highly readable, detailed overview…Lapierre’s presentation of the horrific facts of official racism is riveting.”


  • “Dynamic…The author peoples his narrative with vivid stories of individuals, black and white, who shaped the history of the land that was to become South Africa…The author’s focus on individuals makes for an engaging, easy-to-read story.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • “[Rudnicki’s] deep, resonant voice and dramatic reading engages the listeners from the very first words as he narrates the details of the bloody and horrific birth of a nation.”

  • A Library Journal Best Audiobook of 2010

Listener Reviews

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  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 David | 1/16/2014

    " Not as much about the 1650-1900 as I expected. So it turned more into a book about the 50's - today. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Harmeet | 11/15/2013

    " Starts from the landing of Dutch in South Africa to the end of apartheid. A fascinating easy read. I liked it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Fra007 | 11/9/2013

    " a lire absolument ! c'est ecrit comme un roman d'aventure... tragique ! mais avec un "happy end"... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Maryline | 11/28/2012

    " Loved every minute of it. Complete history of South Africa apartheid, why it happened and how they got out of it. Fabulous! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Noah | 9/21/2012

    " History of South Africa from the first arrival of white settlers in the 17th century until the abolition of Apartheid. The first half of the book was more interesting as I was already pretty familiar with the Apartheid story "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Stephen | 1/13/2012

    " An enjoyable and concise history of South Africa, with it's checkered past and promising future. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tuck | 8/31/2011

    " pretty heavy on the white side, but ok if you don't know much about sa history. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Alan | 2/14/2011

    " I was inspired to read this after seeing the movie "Invictus". "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Susy | 2/2/2011

    " Excellent writing; gives a wonderful understanding of the cultural clashes that has brought South Africa to where it is today. It also provides the reader with an appreciation for how well the South African people have done to move their country toward a true non-racial democracy. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Judy | 7/22/2010

    " A concise history of South Africa, very readable. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Caroline | 1/11/2010

    " Liked it - kind of felt rushed at the end but I thought he provided a nice overview of South Africa. I would like to read more about the subject now. "

About the Author

Dominique Lapierre was for many years senior reporter and editor for Paris Match. He is the author of several earlier books published in France, some of them based on his knowledge of the United States, where he attended Lafayette College and where his father served with the French diplomatic service.

About the Narrator

Stefan Rudnicki first became involved with audiobooks in 1994. Now a Grammy-winning audiobook producer, he has worked on more than three thousand audiobooks as a narrator, writer, producer, or director. He has narrated more than three hundred audiobooks. A recipient of multiple AudioFile Earphones Awards, he was presented the coveted Audie Award for solo narration in 2005, 2007, and 2014, and was named one of AudioFile’s Golden Voices in 2012.