Africa Reading Challenge
Siphoning Off A Few Thoughts is hosting an Africa Reading Challenge. The idea is to read six books this year which are about Africa, set in Africa, written by an African etc and then post reviews. I wish I had a few more imaginative books sitting in my unread pile: Elizabeth David’s Provincial Nile Cuisine, Nyama Choma at Blandings or First Shoot Your Elephant: The Gentleman’s Guide to Ivory Carving. But I don’t. My books are all self-consciously and obviously about Africa in one way or another. Often they have been bought for work as much as pleasure.
So here’s where you, the reader, come in. I’m looking for nominations for the sixth spot on my list. I want a book that has Africa as an incidental factor. Maybe a noirish thriller that just happens to be set in Bangui. Or an economic history of the goat. That sort of thing. Anyone suggesting anything by Alexander McCall Smith will be barred from this blog for ever.
Anyway, here are my five for now…
The Wizard of The Nile: The Hunt for Africa’s Most Wanted by Matt Green – I’m waiting for this to arrive at the bookshop and have blogged about wanting to read it elsewhere
The Pickup by Nadine Gordimer – The cover looked nice so I bought it
Warriors: Life and Death Among Somalis by Gerald Hanley – I’ve read several books about Somalia without any of them really getting to grips with the country. This, I’m told, is different
A Bend in the River by VS Naipaul – this was bought as a treat to myself when I had got bogged down with too many academic texts about Africa. Predictably, I still haven’t got around to reading it
Abyssinian Chronicles by Moses Isegawa – OK, another one that has been sitting on my shelves for an age. It’s more than 500 pages and by an author I’ve never heard of, so I’m hoping that putting it on my list will force me to persevere