Frankie and Stankie: rejacketed and over 2 million other books are available for Amazon Kindle . Learn more

Buy New

Sign in to turn on 1-Click ordering.
Buy Used
Used - Very Good See details
Price: 2.80

More Buying Choices
Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Image not available

Start reading Frankie and Stankie: rejacketed on your Kindle in under a minute.

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

Frankie and Stankie [Paperback]

Barbara Trapido
3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
RRP: 7.99
Price: 6.39 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
You Save: 1.60 (20%)
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
Only 11 left in stock (more on the way).
Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.
Want it Wednesday, 23 April? Choose Express delivery at checkout. Details


Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition 4.12  
Paperback 6.39 Trade-In Store
Did you know you can use your mobile to trade in your unwanted books for an Gift Card to spend on the things you want? Visit the Books Trade-In Store for more details or check out the Trade-In Amazon Mobile App Guidelines on how to trade in using a smartphone. Learn more.

Book Description

18 May 2009
Dinah and her sister Lisa are growing up in 1950s South Africa, where racial laws are tightening. They are two little girls from a dissenting liberal family. Big sister Lisa is strong and sensible, while Dinah is weedy and arty. At school, the sadistic Mrs Vaughan-Jones is providing instruction in mental arithmetic and racial prejudice. And then there's the puzzle of lunch break. 'Would you rather have a native girl or a koelie to make your sandwiches?' a first-year classmate asks. But Dinah doesn't know the answer, because it's her dad who makes her sandwiches. As the apparatus of repression rolls on, Dinah finds her own way. As we follow her journey through childhood and adolescence, we enter into one of the darker passages of twentieth-century history.

Frequently Bought Together

Frankie and Stankie + Brother of the More Famous Jack + Juggling
Price For All Three: 19.97

Buy the selected items together

Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought

Product details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC (18 May 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0747599599
  • ISBN-13: 978-0747599593
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 371,621 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


'This is a gorgeous book about growing up it also manages to convey, with admirable lightness of touch, the dawning of a political consciousness A wonderful read' Observer 'A beautifully written slice of both personal and political history by the end of the novel, you are immersed in her world and simply never want to leave it' Guardian 'A blissfully funny sequence of portraits, family upon family, vignette upon vignette' Daily Telegraph 'I love Barbara Trapido and I adore her books' Carole Shields

About the Author

Barbara Trapido was born in South Africa and is the author of six novels. She lives in Oxford.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Excerpt
Search inside this book:

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
By Emily - London VINE VOICE
I was seduced into reading Barbara Trapido for the first time by this autobiography-turned-novel about growing up in South Africa in the 1950s, the child of a German mother and Dutch-Jewish academic father.
This is fundamentally different from her earlier, lighter, novels I have now read. The politics of South Africa is so bizarre, she has no reason to rely on her usual juxtaposition of strange cause and effect, fatal coincidence and melodramatic characterisation. All she has to do, to create her well-practised sense of absurd but successful juggling, is to place the extreme politics of the time alongside the ordinary dramas of a girl growing up. People in custody are "suddenly beginning to manage fatal accidents... on the stairs, taking tumbles from upstairs windows". "Dinah's response ... is to join the madrigal group".
Reading this book helped me understand the recent history of South Africa better and what it felt like to live through a time when shocking events have become routine. The images are so strong it is almost as if there is a camera there. It all rings true, even though it benefits from hindsight. The character and her family are in that society but not quite of it. Her parents had dragged themselves out of Europe to escape all that, and their attitude towards Boers, she makes clear, is at first essentially snobbish. But for Barbara's generation, the only way was out - the trek to London is the inevitable end of this novel.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
42 of 44 people found the following review helpful
In Frankie and Stankie, Barbara Trapido continues a trend for dark subject material, first glimpsed in The Travelling Horn Player.
This is the story of Dinah, growing up in South Africa in the 1950s and 1960s. Living with liberal parents, she experiences apartheid with growing disgust, but nevertheless does not allow it to interfere with the importance of a first boyfriend, doing well in exams and finding best friends.
Frankie and Stankie is a marvellous book. Trapido's trademark light touch is wonderfully on display as characters, both average and extraordinary are brought to life beautifully. But underlying her usual vignettes is the history of South Africa. For those who know little about the country this is a fantastic introduction to exactly what the Boer War was, to the way in which the British and Afrikaans battled for supremacy, and the attempts to undermine the regime of apartheid.
Frankie and Stankie draws no simple conclusions, and does not lay all blame solely at one person's door. It attempts to document a past (albeit from a clear personal standpoint), and does so excellently.
This is a wonderful book, and I would heartily recommend it.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Doris Lessing with jokes! 21 May 2006
By Lady Fancifull TOP 500 REVIEWER
Like the first couple of books in the 'Martha Quest' 'Children of Violence' series, this book covers the childhood, adolescence and early womanhood of a white girl growing up in the era of apartheid (Trapido's South Africa for Lessing's as it then was 'Rhodesia')

Both books explore the awful waste of humanity and human potential which apartheid brought - and how it crushed and stultified its proponents, even those who championed and upheld its tenets - as well as its devastating effect on the non-white population.

Both books also explore what it means to be a girl child, and to grow into womanhood in that community, and at that time, before feminist ideas had become more mainstream.

Lessing is much darker, mythic and visceral, whereas Trapido's wit, inventiveness and almost Dorothy Parker like acidity turns the same mixture into something much funnier - though equally as heartfelt, serious and truthful. She captures brilliantly the power and pleasure of schoolgirl friendships.

And i admired her ability to instruct in some of the complications of South African politics of the era without falling into the trap of 'delivering lectures' or using clumsy devices to give her readers a historical perspective - you know the sort of devices where one character will instruct or lecture to another character some crucial pieces of infomation, and you know this is only there because you, the reader, may not know the information and the writer needs YOU, not the other character, to know this!

In fact, Trapido did this all so well that I really can't remember exactly how she managed it - which means it worked splendidly and seamlessly!
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Keyne Readers enjoyed this very much 5 July 2005
By A Customer
Our reading group were generally enthusiastic about Frankie and Stankie, and most of us had enjoyed reading it. Comments like 'really lovely' 'entertaining' and 'so witty' flew about the room as we settled into a more detailed discussion. There was consensus that the terrifically dry style and the humour in the story, the pace at which it moved, and the subtle interweaving of stories made this a book was liked. The way it managed to entwine the entertaining and witty vignettes of family life with the more serious issues around the political changes taking place was cleverly done, although one of us would have liked to have had more emphasis on the political. Some of us though weren't keen on the way it meandered about without more structure and plot, and sometimes found that there were too many names and characters being introduced making it hard to keep track of what was happening to whom.
We thought that the title, the picture and descriptions on the cover were misleading, suggesting that the book was about Dinah and Lisa, whereas although Lisa figured strongly at the beginning, it was clearly Dinah's story. The way in which some characters fizzled out as the story progressed we found irritating too, as we wanted to know what happened to their lives too. But realised that this was in some ways realistic as seen from Dinah's point of view, and as we grow up the importance of different people in our lives - both family and friends -changes. The ending too was disappointing. We felt it would have ended better at the moment Dinah left South Africa, and that the 'Afterword' didn't sit comfortably with the rest of the book.
Even though few of us knew much detail of the history of events in South Africa, the story easily carried you along informing and explaining on the way.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Were these reviews helpful?   Let us know
Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars A great read
I loved this book and it brought lots of nostalgic memories go the time I lived there with my family.
Published 4 months ago by pame
5.0 out of 5 stars Five stars for Frankie and Stankie
I enjoyed it; I don't know South Africa well although I lived for forty years in a neighboring country. Read more
Published 5 months ago by ruthamidthealiencorn
5.0 out of 5 stars Briliant
I thoroughly enjoyed this story of a girl growing up in South Africa during the apartheid regime.
She is a white girl in a liberal family, and gives a fascinating perspective... Read more
Published 7 months ago by kathleen kurji
3.0 out of 5 stars Frankie & Stankie Book Review
I am not a frequent novel reader therefore I had not heard of Barbara Trapido therefore I was keen to get stuck in to reading this book. Read more
Published 16 months ago by Stephanie O
2.0 out of 5 stars Frankie & Stankie - stank!
I got this for a book club and did not particularly enjoy it. It was not so much a story but a documentary on South African aparthied in the 1950's. Read more
Published 21 months ago by Barbara E Mackie & William Mackie
5.0 out of 5 stars Exquisitely Told Story of a Girl and a Country
A wonderful - partly autobiographical, I think - account of growing up in South Africa after World War II. Read more
Published on 8 Feb 2012 by Kate Hopkins
5.0 out of 5 stars Frankie and Stankie by Barbara Trapido
A MUST read for anyone who grew up in Durban South Africa in the 1950's and for
any one else interested in how the white population ticked in those apartheid days.
Published on 26 Jun 2011 by Paperdoller
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed
Having read the reviews at Amazon before reading this book I was hugely disappointed. It is not only my opinion but that of my reading group. Read more
Published on 11 Jun 2011 by Pamelli
4.0 out of 5 stars enjoyable
I was recommended Barbara Trapido books, and this was the only one I could find. I susect like me, many people are put off by the terrible title. Read more
Published on 9 Oct 2009 by michelle ann
4.0 out of 5 stars If u wanna know something about South Africa, read this...!
This was exctly the right book for me! It's about Dinah, a girl growing up in South Africa in the 50s. Read more
Published on 13 July 2006 by Faith
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews

Customer Discussions

This product's forum
Discussion Replies Latest Post
No discussions yet

Ask questions, Share opinions, Gain insight
Start a new discussion
First post:
Prompts for sign-in

Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions

Look for similar items by category