We Four in Egypt

Now back in the US!

Reading my way through Africa

This year I’ve been focusing my reading on African authors, particularly sub-Saharan African. So I was delighted today to learn, courtesy of Andrew at Meskel Square, about the Africa Reading Challenge, sponsored by … some guy with a blog.

The idea is to read, in 2008, six books “that either were written by African writers, take place in Africa, or deal significantly with Africans and African issues” and then write a blog post with a review of each.

So here’s my list of eight books, of which I’ll read at least six or seven (I haven’t read any of these yet):

  • Purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (Nigeria)
  • Held at a Distance: A Rediscovery of Ethiopia by Rebecca G. Haile (Ethiopia)
  • The Cairo Trilogy by Naguib Mahfouz (Egypt)
  • Long Walk to Freedom: The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela (South Africa)
  • Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight: An African Childhood by Alexandra Fuller (Rhodesia/Zimbabwe)
  • Butterfly Burning by Yvonne Vera (Zimbabwe)
  • Measuring Time or Waiting for an Angel by Helon Habila (Nigeria)

I read Adichie’s Half a Yellow Sun a few weeks ago, and it was incredible, so I look forward to her other book. Of course I’m especially interested in Ethiopia, so Haile’s book should be great. Mahfouz’s book is a choice because I really should read some more Egyptian writers. Mandela’s autobiography is supposed to be great. And the last couple were semi-random picks.

Join me, if you are so inclined.


30 March 2008 Posted by | africa, books, ethiopia | 20 Comments