I really related to Birds of Uganda, due to its East African setting. The descriptions of the country, the people, the markets, the food, the towns, the weather, were familiar to me, because I was born in Nyasaland, a small country to the south of Uganda, but nonetheless somewhat East African . The themes of colonialism, racism, and workplace bullying loom large, but luckily the human interest aspect was more predominant, the knots and tangles of family relationships, a love story.
And I am Sovereign fizzed across my life in spectacular style. Loved it!
I am Sovereign – Nicola Barker. Wonderful – the novel reinvented. Funny, original ,fresh.See my review on this site on 19 August. Rave, Rave, Rave.
We are all Birds of Uganda – Hafsa Zayyan . Hard to believe it’s a Debut novel. Second and Third generation Asians were kicked out of Uganda by dictator Idi Amin in 1972 , and reluctantly re-homed by Britain. The slow exploration of an Indian family’s past, and struggles with the younger generation in the present, made for an engrossing family saga. Recommended.
Mobile Library – David Whitehouse. A cracking adventure story combined with a coming-of-age theme, plus a homage to books, childhood classics, and adventure stories, that we all loved. An exciting contemporary read, with a satisfying ending. Recommended.
The Reunion – Joanne Fedler. Seven women friends rendezvous in a country house on a weekend getaway. Secrets and stories are aired and shared about motherhood, marriage, men, triumphs, and tragedies. The narrator gets very personal and intense, too much so on occasion.The major takeaways were: the male species is a mystery, teenagers are monsters, and women do the best they can against massive odds. Men will run a mile from the book, women will embrace it.
The Scandalous Times of a Book Louse. A memoir of a childhood – Robert Muponde. Growing up in rural Zimbabwe during the 1970s and 80s. If you want to find out about growing up in a large, poverty stricken rural African family then read the book. But be prepared for full on, no holds barred, raw, vivid, story telling. Between the folktales, songs and poems, there’s plenty of violence (against children!) animal cruelty, and sex. Sensitive readers will not enjoy the book.
Endurance – A C Spahn. (e-book) Refreshing to find a space opera written by a woman who gives us the entire gamut of purple, Space Opera, heroic action and glory with an old, battered space ship, a disgraced Captain, a crew of misfit geniuses, plus aliens with tentacles, and more. Lotsa fun! One for the SF fans.
The Girl in the Red Dress – Ann Tyler. Ordinary people living ordinary lives; finnicky middle aged PC techie mucks up his tepid romantic relationship. Not a rave read for me.