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Glenn Agliotti by Peter Piegl and Sean Newman Launched in Johannesburg

Peter Piegl and Sean Newman

It was only fitting that Glenn Agliotti should arrive at the Mandela Square launch of his biography, Glenn Agliotti, accompanied by a small army of private security guards. Seeing the man in public can have a combustible effect on a crowd of people – and quite a large crowd had gathered for this particular event.

Glenn AgliottiGlenn AgliottiIn the end, however, only a minor disruption occurred, when a shout came, from somewhere in the audience, to the effect that the book was a lie.

Its authors naturally disagreed, and after the interruption the event continued quite smoothly. “Why a Glenn Agliotti book?” asked author Peter Piegl rhetorically. He then explained that the job of the author was not to convince anyone, but to communicate certain points that readers could use to draw their own conclusions. “It’s just like any other book with a subject. Only the subject of our book is Glenn Agliotti himself.”

Sean Newman described their holistic approach to research, which involved weeding through court documentation then reverting to Agliotti to check facts and to make sense of everything. “It’s easier to write a book about a dead person”, he said Newman, referring to Lolly Jackson, the subject of his and Piegl’s previous book.

Before inviting the audience to a book signing session with Piegl and Agliotti himself, Newman confirmed that there is another controversial book in the pipeline and – without giving anything away – said that the audience had much to look forward to.

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