Book Reviews, Book and Film Lists by Genre

Reviews of Books on Politics and Current Affairs, Climate Changes Self Help; Heqlth and Self Improvement Reviews of Books about Italy Reviews of popular Book on Scientic Discovery, the Garden and Nature Reviews of books about Romance and Love

Books and Films about Africa and Reviews of books about Africa

Books and Films about Africa
Chinua Achebe Things fall Apart - Achebe (1930-2013) was one of the great writers in Africa. He is Ibo and comes from Eastern Nigeria. For a brief time that area was known as Biafra and the cause of a vicious civil war (1967-1970). The country under General Ojukwu (1933-2011) fought and lost its independence against President Yakubu Gowon (born 1934) of Nigeria.
Joseph Conrad Heart of Darkness - was written in 1899 by the Polish-British writer (1857- 1924) - Charles Marlow's experience as an ivory transporter down the Congo River in Central Africa. The river is "a mighty big river, that you could see on the map, resembling an immense snake uncoiled, with its head in the sea, its body at rest curving afar over a vast country, and its tail lost in the depths of the land".The story is a complex exploration of the attitudes people hold on what constitutes a barbarian versus a civilized society and the attitudes on colonialism and racism that were part and parcel of European imperialism.
William Boyd Brazzaville Beach - A story that happened in Africa – it was a winner of the Booker Prize the highest British Literature Price – brilliantly written

The Ice Cream War
A story about the time when the Germans, during WW 1 lost their colonial empire (Tanganyika – todays Tanzania)
Mary Kingsley Travels in West Africa (it is a reprint one can get at It is the story of a remarkable woman (1862-1900) who traveled (1893,1894) in the 19th Century around West and Central Africa. She defied all social conventions of the time and had an extraordinary life! She was witty, clever and observant and hated the Christian missionary zeal of other European explorers. (published in 1897 and 1899)

The Congo and the Cameroons
Her travels around the Cameron mountains and on the Congo River. She most likely traveled near what became later our cattle ranch at 6500 feet above Obudu in Nigeria.
Isak Dinesen Out of Africa - This is another extraordinary tale of a woman's experience in East Africa. Baroness Karen von Blixen-Finecke (17 April 1885 – 7 September 1962), ne Karen Christenze Dinesen, was a Danish author writing amongst other names under Isak Dinesen. She was a prolific writer and wrote numerous other stories. (you can also get the story on a excellent DVD – Out of Africa with Robert Redford)
Bruce Chadwin The Viceroy of Ouidah a portray of a 19th Century Brazilian Slave Trader in Benin West Africa
Charles Allen Tales from the Dark Continent Africa – Classic Stories from Africa
Wole Soyinka Ak: The Years of Childhood (1989) - a staggering story about his childhood in Ake in Western Nigeria. Also, an introduction into the complex spiritual world of the Yoruba’s
Of Africa2013 – an inquiry into Africa's culture, religion, history, imagination and identity. This is one book that will help you understand Africa better
A Yoruba writer (born 1934) and the first African Winner of the Literature Nobel Prize.
V.S. Naipaul The Bend in the River – A story about the River Congo and its inhabitants. There were many Indian traders in East and Central Africa. Many of them, as a group known as East African Asians were Ismaelies, followers of the Aga Khan. Naipaul, the great British novelist who is of Indian origin but comes from Trinidad, knows these communities very well.
Naipaul is a prolific British writer winner of the Nobel Prize and many other awards
Robert Wilson The Big Killing - A Bruce Medway action drama in West Africa (Nigeria, Ghana, Liberia, Benin, Togo, Ivory Coast) A very realistic and true story of a „fixer" – i.e. A man who fixes things that go wrong; and in West Africa, or in Africa in general, things always go wrong.
Blood is Dirt - another Bruce Medway Story

Malyn Newitt and Marilyn D Newitt A History of Mozambique - This book summarizes five hundred years of the history of the societies that exist within the area that became Mozambique in 1891. It also takes the story up to the present, including the War of Liberation and Mozambique after independence. It is work of major scholarship that will appeal to experts and students alike.
Martin Meredith The Fate of Africa: A History of the Continent Since Independence  - Revised, Updated Edition - Meredith's writing - that of a journalist (The Observer and The Sunday Times) and Africanb corresondent - has been described as authoritative and well-documented, despite the pessimism so often imposed upon his subject matter

The Fortunes of Africa: A 5000-Year History of Wealth, Greed, and Endeavor (2016)

Christopher Ehret The Civilizations of Africa: A History to 1800 (2016) - This text offers us systematic and thoughtful coverage of Africa’s early history, dividing the period between 22,000 b.c.e. and 1450 into six long chapters, which draw mainly upon his own publications in the field of historical linguistics but also upon archaeology and occasionally other disciplines.
Peter Garlake Early Art and Architecture of Africa (Oxford History of Art)1st Edition
Peter Garlake was Inspector of Monuments, Rhodesia, 1964-70; Senior Research Fellow, University of Ife, Nigeria, 1971-3; Nuffield Research Student, British Institute in Eastern Africa, 1962-4; and Lecturer, Department of Anthropology, University College London, 1976-81. He has done archaeological fieldwork in Rhodesia, Nigeria, Mozambique, Tanzania, Kenya, and Somali coasts, Qatar.

The book is very eye opening about the artistic abilities of these ancient people. It even goes beyond what we know about their construction. You find that awe-inspiring palaces were not confined to Egypt and the rest of North Africa, but advanced societies had flourished apart from the rest of the world. I really don't want to give away any of the details, but you won't regret the purchase of this book.
NGUGI WA THIONG’O and UZODINMA IWEALA The River Between (Penguin African Writers Series Book 4) NGUGI WA THIONG’O is an award-winning novelist, playwright, and essayist from Kenya whose novels have been translated into more than thirty languages. He is Distinguished Professor of English at the University of California, Irvine. He lives in Irvine, California.

UZODINMA IWEALA is the author of the award-winning novel Beasts of No Nation and is one of Granta’s Best Young African Novelists. He lives in Lagos, Nigeria, and New York City.
Ngugi wa Thiong'o Devil on the Cross (Penguin African Writers Series - 2017)
This is not a well-behaved novel, the kind you might read with your book club while discussing character motivation over tea and biscuits. This is a novel that wants you to act. . . . It’s the perennial question: What is the point of literature?
Ayi Kwei Armah The Beautyful Ones Are Not Yet Born (African Writers Series - 1989)
Maybe you have to be there to understand, but this book is about early Ghana during bloody coup days. You can almost feel the fear of running from the new military leaders

Reviewed Books about Africa
The Old Drift
It's a sweeping tale about Zambia and the Zambesi river that incorporates a little romance, fairy tale, and science fiction

by Namwali Serpell

(March 18, 2019)
The Lion's Binding Oath
A book about Somalia in which the stories are not dominated by the war there.

by Ahmed Ismail Yusuf

(June 19, 2018)
Lagos Noir
Lagos Nigeria, one of the largest cities in Africa is full of life and problemns abound

Edited by Chris Abani

(June 4 2018)
Nollywood The Making of a Film Empire
The story of the film industry in Lagos Nigeria and how Africa tells a story!

by Emily Witt

(ctober 23, 2017)
Dance of the Jakaranda
The struggle of building the Railroad froim Mombasa to Nairobi and the East African Asians in that!

by Peter Kimani

(January 13, 2017)

The Witch's List
A story playing in Scotland and West Africa. A man gets drawn into a world that he does not know exists!

Andrew Cairns

(August 4, 2016)
Chronicle of a Last Summer
The female narrator tells about her life in Egypt

by Yasmine El Rashidi

(June 9 , 2016)
Who Will Catch Us As We Fall
The return of an East African Asian to the former home in Nairobi, Kenya There are numerous stories within the story!.

by J
Iman Verjee

(June 20, 2016)
And After Many Days
The tale of the disappearence of a Nigerian boy in Port Harcoiurt, Nigeria creates a spellbinding story, in it's effect on his family and their constant search for answers.

by Jowhor Ile

(February 24 2016)

Instruments of Darkness
Bruce Medway, a fixer in West Africa gets into difficulties.

by Robert Wilson

(August 3, 2015)
White Leopard
A fast passed crime story of a policeman retiring from France and returning to his homeland in Mali, West Africa

by Laurent Guillaume

(September 14, 2015)

Young Readers

Adventure at Simba Hill
An excellent book for the young reader. It's full of fun and adventure, with good descriptions of Kenya, its people, culture, and environment

by Susan Runholt

(September 4, 2018)


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