Edward Fairly Stuart Graham Cloete, (July 23, 1897-March 19, 1976) was a South African novelist, essayist, biographer and short story writer.
Cloete was born in Paris, France to a French mother and South African father. He lived most of his adult life in the town of Hermanus, in the Western Cape. He published his first novel, Turning Wheels, in 1937: it became a best-seller, selling more than two million copies. Importation of the book was subsequently banned in South Africa, owing to its commentary on the Great Trek, the event in which the book is set.
Many of his 14 novels and most of his short stories are historically based fictional adventures, set against the backdrop of major African, and, in particular, South African historical events. Apart from Turning Wheels, another prominent novel, 1963's Rags of Glory, is set during the Boer war (with, according to its foreword, much of the historical information based on Rayne Kruger's Goodbye Dolly Gray.) Two of his novels were turned into movies: The Fiercest Heart (1961) is based on his (1955) novel of the same name, and Majuba, released in 1968, is based on his 1941 novel The Hill of the Doves.
His short stories are also much-acclaimed. He published at least eight volumes [his biography says eight, but I have more! asb. help here] in his lifetime.
Aside from his South-African related works, he was among the pioneers of the by-now voluminous sub-genre depicting the aftermath of nuclear war. His 1947 novelette The Blast is written as the diary of a survivor living in the ruins of New York (published in 6 Great Short Novels of Science Fiction, ed. Groff Conklin, 1954) (see Nuclear Holocaust).
Other written genres to which he contributed included poetry (collected in a volume published in 1941, The Young Men and the Old) and biography (African Portraits, 1946).
He published the first part of his autobiography, A Victorian Son, in 1972 and the second, The Gambler, in 1973. Stuart Cloete died on March 19, 1976, in Cape Town, South Africa.