About us


Jonathan Ball Publishers was started in 1976 and is the leading publisher and distributor of English general books in South Africa. We specialise in South African history, politics and current affairs and also publish some fiction. We also act as agents for British and American publishers, marketing and distributing books on their behalf in southern Africa.


Among the many and varied titles distributed in South Africa by us are the Harry Potter series, probably the biggest success story ever in the field of children's literature. We are also the sole distributors of J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, and C.S. Lewis' popular stories in The Chronicles of Narnia series.


Jonathan Ball Publishers have won the Sunday Times Alan Paton Award on eight occasions with The Dead will Arise by Jeff Peires, The Scramble for Africa by Thomas Pakenham, Mandela by Anthony Sampson, The Seed is Mine by Charles van Onselen, Mouthful of Glass by Henk van Woerden and Thabo Mbeki: The Dream Deferred by Mark Gevisser. Jonny Steinberg is the only author to have won the prize twice for Midlands in 2003 and for The Number in 2005.








Our Own Publishing:

To publish books about South Africa which enlighten and entertain. Books of a liberal sanity which pander to neither left nor right nor to clever contemporary fashions in thinking.



Our Agency and Distribution Business:

To be South Africa's leading agent for British and American publishers and in this way maintain and foster links with the English speaking world. To offer the most efficient, fastest and most cheerful service to our Bookseller customers.






Hachette Book Group USA
Hachette Book Group USA
HarperCollins Publishers
Headline Publishing Group
Hodder and Stoughton

Hodder & Stoughton
Orion Book Group
Orion Book Group
Simon and Schuster Publishers

Simon & Schuster
Taschen Taschen

ECommerce Retailers