©2001 Alexandra Fuller; (P)2003 Recorded Books, LLC
"A classic is born in this tender, intensely moving and even delightful journey through a white African girl's childhood." (Publishers Weekly)
"This was no ordinary childhood, and it makes a riveting story thanks to an extraordinary telling." (School Library Journal)
"In this powerful debut, Fuller fully succeeds in memorializing the beauty of each desert puddle and each African summer night sky while also recognizing that beauty can lie hidden in the faces of those who have crossed her path. Highly recommended." (Library Journal)
"An honest, moving portrait of one family struggling to survive tumultuous times." (Booklist)
I have not read the print version.
Fuller writes in a very verbose style. A reader of the print version might find this a plodding and heavy style. By listening to Lecat's excellent narration, I could enjoy the imagery without struggling with the reading.
I got carried away to another time in Africa...
I Loved this book, and was delighted when the audio version recently became available to listeners in South Africa. (Thank you, Audible).
I could relate to everything Fuller wrote (from the longdrop toilets to the earthiness of our being), and admired her simple, factual, undramatic, almost understated style. You need to read/listen between the lines in order to begin to understand the enormous courage, fortitude, endurance which this family lived from day to day. How they continued the struggle of survival, which Africa often is, in the face of all obstacles and severe trials.
A lovely read that reached deep into my heart.
It brought back so many memories.
I still have a bag in my cupboard, with "Rhodesia" and an elephant printed on it. A relic from years since, and yet it stays while others get turfed out. With it is a book, called "Hold My Hand, I'm Dying".
I remember the almost unbearable heat, walking along the Zambezi, each of us carrying a garden umbrella in an effort to shield ourselves from the blistering, dessicating sun. Then the songs we sang as we bumped along in an old pick-up: (regret, composer unknown)
O the stinging tsetse flies and the crocodile eyes
This is no place to dally
For there's no food here and I long for a beer
In the hot Zambezi valley.
In the cool place that i come from
The women are like velvet
The bulldogs all have rubber teeth
And the hens lay instant omelettes.
Oooooooh the stinging tsetse flies .....
Thank you, Alexandra Fuller. I'm sure you miss Africa and are glad you're gone, all mixed up into one great big emotion.
Lisette Lecat's narration was superb with no jarring accents to a local ear. She seems to have lived in these parts, and has a lovely voice.
I enjoyed this memoir. Partly because I am not familiar with the places and times. Partly because it was about survival, but probably mostly because I loved the reader. Her voice and accents were spot on and made the story come to life.
Immigration lawyer in Kansas City. I like Character driven dramas, fantasy (monsters, magic and witches oh my!) and coming of age stories. Favs include: The Book Thief, The Game of Throne series, Harry Potter Series, Dresden Files, Nightside series, anything by Neil Gaimen, 100 Years of Solitude.
This is an incredible story. It is so completely foreign to me how the author and her family lived during her childhood. Ms. Fuller is a brillant story teller and speaks of her unusual childhood and her unconventional and fairly racist parents with such candor that you are drawn into the madness of her life. I could not stop listening.
The narrator was wonderful as always. Ms. Lecatt is always such a joy to listen to I can get enough of her lovely voice.
Hearing this recording made me want to read the book, but not finish listening to it. Fuller writes with a lot of humor, but Lecat doesn't seem to get any of it. That means a book which contains a lot of tough situations ends up tremendously dreary.
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