Kim’s comment about saving boring books for an even more boring plane ride pretty much sums up the first half to 2/3 of this book. If I had read it when I was detained in such a dull place I would have had the pleasant surprise of the book turning around and making me want to find out what happens to the people we met in Kenya. What struck me about this book was how different yet alike all humans are. We rebel against establishment and then run back into its comforting embrace. When we are deeply wronged, we return to the person or situation that hurt us instead of moving on. the hurt you know is more comfortable than the joy that might be found in the unknown. And, when it’s all said and done, you cannot change people. You can only change yourself.
I have read several reviews of this book on Amazon.com and other on-line bookstores. Those people who have left comments overwhelmingly loved this book. I’m open to the idea that I might not have been in the right place to appreciate it. I’ve gotten a little weary of reading at this point and haven’t yet gotten my second wind. It’s a great possibility. That being said, I can’t agree with those who would like to see this book added to high school reading lists. On the outside, you have a woman who leaves the comfort of her homeland and travels to Africa in an effort to bring books and literacy to another people. That concept is certainly promising, I have to admit that. However, there is much discussion of female genital mutilation and other sexual content that I would consider inappropriate to be required reading. Before I get flamed, I’m in no way advocating burning or banning books. I just wouldn’t feel comfortable assigning that book to an entire student population. What do you think?