African History, General
Featured Items
Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight: An African Childhood
Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight
An African Childhood
Paperback      ISBN: 0375758992
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - A worthy heir to Isak Dinesen and Beryl Markham, Alexandra Fuller shares visceral memories of her childhood in Africa, and of her headstrong, unforgettable mother.

"This is not a book you read just once, but a tale of terrible beauty to get lost in over and over."--Newsweek

"By turns mischievous and openhearted, earthy and soaring . . . hair-raising, horrific, and thrilling."--The New Yorker

Though it is a diary of an unruly life in an often inhospitable place, Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight is suffused with Fuller's endearing ability to find laughter, even when there is little to celebrate. Fuller's debut is unsentimental and unflinching but always captivating. In wry and sometimes hilarious prose, she stares down disaster and looks back with rage and love at the life of an extraordinary family in an extraordinary time.

From 1972 to 1990, Alexandra Fuller--known to friends and family as Bobo--grew up on several farms in southern and central Africa. Her father joined up on the side of the white government in the Rhodesian civil war, and was often away fighting against the powerful black guerilla factions. Her mother, in turn, flung herself at their African life and its rugged farm work with the same passion and maniacal energy she brought to everything else. Though she loved her children, she was no hand-holder and had little tolerance for neediness. She nurtured her daughters in other ways: She taught them, by example, to be resilient and self-sufficient, to have strong wills and strong opinions, and to embrace life wholeheartedly, despite and because of difficult circumstances. And she instilled in Bobo, particularly, a love of reading and of storytelling that proved to be her salvation.

Alexandra Fuller writes poignantly about a girl becoming a woman and a writer against a backdrop of unrest, not just in her country but in her home. But Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight is more than a survivor's story. It is the story of one woman's unbreakable bond with a continent and the people who inhabit it, a portrait lovingly realized and deeply felt.

Praise for Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight

"Riveting . . . full of] humor and compassion."--O: The Oprah Magazine

"The incredible story of an incredible childhood."--The Providence Journal
Out of Africa: And Shadows on the Grass
Out of Africa
And Shadows on the Grass
Paperback      ISBN: 0679724753

In describing her experiences managing a coffee plantation in Kenya, the author provides insights into the nature of African life

The Lost World of the Kalahari
The Lost World of the Kalahari
Paperback      ISBN: 0156537060

An account of the author's grueling, but ultimately successful, journey in 1957, through Africa's remote, primitive Kalahari Desert, in search of the legendary Bushmen, the hunters who pray to the great hunters in the sky.

The Translator: A Tribesman's Memoir of Darfur
The Translator
A Tribesman's Memoir of Darfur
1st Edition    Hardcover      ISBN: 1400067448

"I am the translator who has taken journalists into dangerous Darfur. It is my intention now to take you there in this book, if you have the courage to come with me."
The young life of Daoud Hari-his friends call him David-has been one of bravery and mesmerizing adventure. He is a living witness to the brutal genocide under way in Darfur.
"The Translator" is a suspenseful, harrowing, and deeply moving memoir of how one person has made a difference in the world-an on-the-ground account of one of the biggest stories of our time. Using his high school knowledge of languages as his weapon-while others around him were taking up arms-Daoud Hari has helped inform the world about Darfur.
Hari, a Zaghawa tribesman, grew up in a village in the Darfur region of Sudan. As a child he saw colorful weddings, raced his camels across the desert, and played games in the moonlight after his work was done. In 2003, this traditional life was shattered when helicopter gunships appeared over Darfur's villages, followed by Sudanese-government-backed militia groups attacking on horseback, raping and murdering citizens and burning villages. Ancient hatreds and greed for natural resources had collided, and the conflagration spread.
Though Hari's village was attacked and destroyedhis family decimated and dispersed, he himself escaped. Roaming the battlefield deserts on camels, he and a group of his friends helped survivors find food, water, and the way to safety. When international aid groups and reporters arrived, Hari offered his services as a translator and guide. In doing so, he risked his life again and again, for the government of Sudan had outlawed journalists in the region, and death was the punishment for those who aided the "foreign spies." And then, inevitably, his luck ran out and he was captured. . . .
"The Translator" tells the remarkable story of a man who came face-to-face with genocide- time and again risking his own life to fight injustice and save his people.

Long Walk to Freedom: The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela
Long Walk to Freedom
The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela
Paperback      ISBN: 0316548189
"Essential reading for anyone who wants to understand history - and then go out and change it." -President Barack Obama Nelson Mandela was one of the great moral and political leaders of his time: an international hero whose lifelong dedication to the fight against racial oppression in South Africa won him the Nobel Peace Prize and the presidency of his country. After his triumphant release in 1990 from more than a quarter-century of imprisonment, Mandela was at the center of the most compelling and inspiring political drama in the world. As president of the African National Congress and head of South Africa's antiapartheid movement, he was instrumental in moving the nation toward multiracial government and majority rule. He is still revered everywhere as a vital force in the fight for human rights and racial equality.

Long Walk to Freedom is his moving and exhilarating autobiography, destined to take its place among the finest memoirs of history's greatest figures. Here for the first time, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela told the extraordinary story of his life -- an epic of struggle, setback, renewed hope, and ultimate triumph. The book that inspired the major motion picture Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom.
When a Crocodile Eats the Sun: A Memoir of Africa
When a Crocodile Eats the Sun
A Memoir of Africa
Paperback      ISBN: 0316018716

After his father's heart attack in 1984, Peter Godwin began a series of pilgrimages back to Zimbabwe, the land of his birth, from Manhattan, where he now lives. On these frequent visits to check on his elderly parents, he bore witness to Zimbabwe's dramatic spiral downwards into the jaws of violent chaos, presided over by an increasingly enraged dictator. And yet long after their comfortable lifestyle had been shattered and millions were fleeing, his parents refuse to leave, steadfast in their allegiance to the failed state that has been their adopted home for 50 years.

Then Godwin discovered a shocking family secret that helped explain their loyalty. Africa was his father's sanctuary from another identity, another world.

When a Crocodile Eats the Sun is a stirring memoir of the disintegration of a family set against the collapse of a country. But it is also a vivid portrait of the profound strength of the human spirit and the enduring power of love.
A Savage War of Peace: Algeria 1954-1962
A Savage War of Peace
Algeria 1954-1962
Paperback      ISBN: 1590172183

The Algerian War lasted from 1954 to 1962. It brought down six French governments, led to the collapse of the Fourth Republic, returned de Gaulle to power, and came close to provoking a civil war on French soil. More than a million Muslim Algerians died in the conflict and as many European settlers were driven into exile. Above all, the war was marked by an unholy marriage of revolutionary terror and repressive torture.

Nearly a half century has passed since this savagely fought war ended in Algeria's independence, and yet--as Alistair Horne argues in his new preface to his now-classic work of history--its repercussions continue to be felt not only in Algeria and France, but throughout the world. Indeed from today's vantage point the Algerian War looks like a full-dress rehearsal for the sort of amorphous struggle that convulsed the Balkans in the 1990s and that now ravages the Middle East, from Beirut to Baghdad--struggles in which questions of religion, nationalism, imperialism, and terrorism take on a new and increasingly lethal intensity.

A Savage War of Peace is the definitive history of the Algerian War, a book that brings that terrible and complicated struggle to life with intelligence, assurance, and unflagging momentum. It is essential reading for our own violent times as well as a lasting monument to the historian's art.
We Wish to Inform You That Tomorrow We Will Be Killed with Our Families: Stories from Rwanda
We Wish to Inform You That Tomorrow We Will Be Killed with Our Families
Stories from Rwanda
Paperback      ISBN: 0312243359

An unforgettable firsthand account of a people's response to genocide and what it tells us about humanity.

This remarkable debut book chronicles what has happened in Rwanda and neighboring states since 1994, when the Rwandan government called on everyone in the Hutu majority to murder everyone in the Tutsi minority. Though the killing was low-tech--largely by machete--it was carried out at shocking speed: some 800,000 people were exterminated in a hundred days. A Tutsi pastor, in a letter to his church president, a Hutu, used the chilling phrase that gives Philip Gourevitch his title.

With keen dramatic intensity, Gourevitch frames the genesis and horror of Rwanda's genocidal logic in the anguish of its aftermath: the mass displacements, the temptations of revenge and the quest for justice, the impossibly crowded prisons and refugee camps. Through intimate portraits of Rwandans in all walks of life, he focuses on the psychological and political challenges of survival and on how the new leaders of postcolonial Africa went to war in the Congo when resurgent genocidal forces threatened to overrun central Africa.

Can a country composed largely of perpetrators and victims create a cohesive national society? This moving contribution to the literature of witness tells us much about the struggle everywhere to forge sane, habitable political orders, and about the stubbornness of the human spirit in a world of extremity.

We Wish to Inform You That Tomorrow We Will Be Killed with Our Families is the winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction.
Rough Crossings: Britain, the Slaves and the American Revolution
Rough Crossings
Britain, the Slaves and the American Revolution
Hardcover      ISBN: 006053916x

Rough Crossings turns on a single huge question: if you were black in America at the start of the Revolutionary War, whom would you want to win? In response to a declaration by the last governor of Virginia that any rebel-owned slave who escaped and served the King would be emancipated, tens of thousands of slaves -- Americans who clung to the sentimental notion of British freedom -- escaped from farms, plantations and cities to try to reach the British camp. This mass movement lasted as long as the war did, and a military strategy originally designed to break the plantations of the American South had unleashed one of the great exoduses in American history.

With powerfully vivid storytelling, Schama details the odyssey of the escaped blacks through the fires of war and the terror of potential recapture at the war's end, into inhospitable Nova Scotia, where thousands who had served the Crown were betrayed and, in a little-known hegira of the slave epic, sent across the broad, stormy ocean to Sierra Leone.

Desert Flower
Desert Flower
Paperback      ISBN: 0688172377

Waris's story is one of remarkable courage. From the deserts of Somalia to the world of high fashion, she battles against oppression and emerges a real champion. She is the most beautiful inspiration to anyone. --Elton John

Waris Dirie ran away from her oppressive life in the African desert when she was barely in her teens, illiterate and impoverished, with nothing to her name but a tattered shawl. She traveled alone across the dangerous Somali desert to Mogadishu--the first leg of a remarkable journey that would take her to London, where she worked as a house servant; then to nearly every corner of the globe as an internationally renowned fashion model; and ultimately to New York City, where she became a human rights ambassador for the U.N.

Poignant and powerfully told, Desert Flower is Waris's extraordinary story.