By: Lerato Moteane

Nelisiwe Mngomezulu has a love for reading, which she says it enriches her mind and expands her capacity of thinking. The 22-year-old from Spruitview began with her love for books at a young age, something that most of her peers are not interested in, but that doesn’t influence her into following the crowd as she wouldn’t trade what she loves for anything.

Her mother was the one who first discovered what she loves, because she was too young to even notice what it was. Nelisiwe says that “I would hear stories from my mother telling me how different I was from other children my age, and she told me that everything that had words into it, I would put my hands on it and try to read it even when I get the pronunciation wrong. So, as I grew up I started to improve on my reading skills, my writing also, and my love for books became much deeper as years went by.”

Nelisiwe mentions that she has a collection of books, which range from novels to academic books. “I wouldn’t say I have a specific type of books which I prefer to read, because I read almost anything, as long as it’s worth reading. If you could see my room right now, it is full of books and you would swear that you’re walking in a library when you step inside of it, and that’s how much my love for books is,” she says.

Attending book festivals is what she loves, as she gets to meet like-minded people who share similar ideas. She says that “I like these kinds of events because you get to network and meet people whom you might want to work with in the future.” Nelisiwe says that she doesn’t base her life on books only as she has a life outside that. “People think I’m this uptight person, which is not the case because I do go out and unwind with friends, just to catch a breather and relax my mind,” she said.

For a lady like herself who is from the township, she would like to open her own book club, which will uplift young people especially young women. “I’ve noticed that young people don’t like to read because they would rather be on social media or watch the television; but the nice thing about it is that books have gone digital now and you can even read from your smartphone,” Nelisiwe said. She has started gathering a few people for her book club and hopes on getting more as time goes, and she would like to see it being a success as it has only begun

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