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4 Living Books About Children in Africa


Four wonderful books about children in Africa.


Figgy in the World by Tamsin Janu


Figgy has two problems. One is her name. Nobody in Ghana has that name. The other is that her grandmother is ill and needs special medicine. Figgy can't do much about her name, but she can do something for Grandma Ama. She will go to America and bring back the medicine, and Kwame, her special goat, will go with her. Out in the wide world she will meet some bad people, but she will also find good friends. [goodreads]



Tales from Africa by Kathleen Arnott


In this book of tales from Africa there are stories about an evil-hearted shark, an extremely cunning hare, a very greedy spider, and the strongest man in the world. There are also answers to such questions as why the crab has no head, why the sun and moon live in the sky, and why flies buzz. Drawn from all parts of Africa, these stories illustrate the fierce sense of justice inherent in African peoples, their powers of patience and endurance, and their supreme ability as story-tellers. [bookdepository]



The Other Side of Truth by Beverley Naidoo


After the murder of their mother, twelve-year-old Sade and her younger brother are smuggled out of Nigeria by their journalist father to escape the corrupt military government and growing violence. They are sent to their uncle in London, but when they arrive, he is missing and they are abandoned, passed between foster homes. Their father escapes to England to find them -- but he will be sent back to Nigeria unless Sade can find a way to tell the world what happened to her family.

A Silver Medal winner of England's Smarties Book Prize, Beverly Naidoo's new novel explores the issues of family, exile, and freedom wtih eloquence and stunning realism. [goodreads]



A Long Walk to Water: Based on a True Story by Linda Sue Park


A Long Walk to Water begins as two stories, told in alternating sections, about a girl in Sudan in 2008 and a boy in Sudan in 1985. The girl, Nya, is fetching water from a pond that is two hours’ walk from her home: she makes two trips to the pond every day. The boy, Salva, becomes one of the "lost boys" of Sudan, refugees who cover the African continent on foot as they search for their families and for a safe place to stay. Enduring every hardship from loneliness to attack by armed rebels to contact with killer lions and crocodiles, Salva is a survivor, and his story goes on to intersect with Nya’s in an astonishing and moving way. [goodreads]


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