Author: Lesley Lokko Since childhood, Jen and Kemi have lived like sisters in the McFadden family home in Edinburgh, brought together by a shared family history which stretches back generations. Kemi was educated in Britain alongside Jen and the girls could not be closer; nor could they be more different in the paths they take in life. But the ties that bind them are strong and complicated, and a dark family secret exists in their joint history. Solam Rhoyi is from South Africa's black political elite. Handsome, charismatic, charming, and a successful young banker, he meets both Kemi and Jen on a trip to London and sweeps them off their feet. Partly influenced by her interest in Solam, and partly on a journey of self-discovery, Kemi, now 31, decides to return to the country of her birth for the first time. Jen, seeking an escape from her father's overbearing presence, decides to go with her. In Johannesburg, it becomes clear that Solam is looking for the perfect wife to facilitate his soaring political ambitions. But who will he choose? All the while, the real story behind the two families' connection threatens to reveal itself - with devastating consequences . . .
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Author: James Penhaligon This popular and well-reviewed book has now been revised with the assistance of several enthusiastic readers, former and current expatriates and Kenyan and Tanzanian friends.The captivating story recounts the humour and tragedy of the author's life as a young boy growing up in what was then colonial Tanganyika and Kenya, and the newly independent countries which emerged. It is a must-read for anyone interested in Africa before and after the Winds of Change swept across the continent to alter the lives of so many lucky enough to experience those times. Like many who were born and lived in Africa, the author's life was not the easy one people think colonial expatriates enjoyed, and he relates so vividly his own tragic experiences with hardship, danger and death. Many perils abounded from wild animals, venomous snakes and deadly tropical illnesses. Notwithstanding the ever-present black shadow of death and danger, was the natural instinct of kids to have fun, and the escapades and pleasure the author and his contemporaries created for themselves is related by Penhaligon with rib-aching humour.
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Author: Nelson Mandela The riveting memoirs of the outstanding moral and political leader of our time, Long Walk to Freedom brilliantly re-creates the drama of the experiences that helped shape Nelson Mandela's destiny. Emotive, compelling and uplifting, Long Walk to Freedom is the exhilarating story of an epic life; a story of hardship, resilience and ultimate triumph told with the clarity and eloquence of a born leader.
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Author: Ken Follett A Time of Conflict It is 997 CE, the end of the Dark Ages. The king's grip on the country is fragile and chaos reigns. A young boat builder dreams of a better future after a devastating Viking raid shatters the life he hoped for. Lives Intertwined A Norman noblewoman follows her husband to a new land only to find her life there shockingly different; and a capable monk at Shiring Abbey has a vision of transforming his humble home into a centre of learning admired throughout Europe. The Dawn of a New Age Now, with England at the dawn of the Middle Ages, these three people will each come into dangerous conflict with a ruthless bishop, who will do anything to increase his wealth and power, in an epic tale of ambition, rivalry, love and hate.
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Author: M. G. Vassanji It would take many lifetimes, it was said to me during my first visit, to see all of India. The desperation must have shown on my face to absorb and digest all I possibly could. This was not something I had articulated or resolved; and yet I recall an anxiety as I travelled the length and breadth of the country, senses raw to every new experience, that even in the distraction of a blink I might miss something profoundly significant. I was not born in India, nor were my parents; that might explain much in my expectation of that visit. Yet how many people go to the homeland of their grandparents with such a heartload of expectation and momentousness; such a desire to find themselves in everything they see? Is it only India that clings thus, to those who’ve forsaken it; is this why Indians in a foreign land seem always so desperate to seek each other out? What was India to me?
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Author: Kate Mosse Following on from the Sunday Times number one bestseller, The Burning Chambers, Kate Mosse's The City of Tears is the second thrilling historical epic in The Burning Chambers series, for fans of Ken Follett and Dan Brown. June 1572: for ten, violent years the Wars of Religion have raged across France. Neighbours have become enemies, countless lives have been lost, the country has been torn apart over matters of religion, citizenship and sovereignty. But now a precarious peace is in the balance: a royal wedding has been negotiated by Catherine de' Medici and Jeanne d'Albret, an alliance between the Catholic Crown and Henri, the Huguenot king of Navarre. It is a marriage that could see France reunited at last. Meanwhile, in Puivert, an invitation has arrived for Minou Joubert and her family to attend this historic wedding in Paris in August. But what Minou does not know is that the Joubert family's oldest enemy, Vidal, will also be there. Nor that, within days of the marriage, on the eve of the Feast Day of St Bartholomew's, Minou's family will be scattered to the four winds and one of her beloved children will have disappeared without a trace... A breath-taking novel of revenge, persecution, and loss, sweeping from Paris and Chartres to the City of Tears itself - the great refugee city of Amsterdam - this is a story of one family's fight to stay together, to survive, and to find each other, against the devastating tides of history...
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Author: Bridget Collins If everything in your life was based on a lie, would you risk it all to tell the truth? At Montverre, an exclusive academy tucked away in the mountains, the best and brightest are trained for excellence in the grand jeu: an arcane and mysterious contest. Léo Martin was once a student there, but lost his passion for the grand jeu following a violent tragedy. Now he returns in disgrace, exiled to his old place of learning with his political career in tatters. Montverre has changed since he studied there, even allowing a woman, Claire Dryden, to serve in the grand jeu’s highest office of Magister Ludi. When Léo first sees Claire he senses an odd connection with her, though he’s sure they have never met before. Both Léo and Claire have built their lives on lies. And as the legendary Midsummer Game, the climax of the year, draws closer, secrets are whispering in the walls…
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Author: Maggie O'Farrell
A stunning new departure for Maggie O'Farrell's fiction, Hamnet is the heart-stopping story behind Shakespeare's most famous play. On a summer's day in 1596, a young girl in Stratford-upon-Avon takes to her bed with a fever. Her twin brother, Hamnet, searches everywhere for help. Why is nobody at home? Their mother, Agnes, is over a mile away, in the garden where she grows medicinal herbs. Their father is working in London. Neither parent knows that one of the children will not survive the week. Hamnet is a novel inspired by the son of a famous playwright. It is a story of the bond between twins, and of a marriage pushed to the brink by grief. It is also the story of a kestrel and its mistress; a flea that boards a ship in Alexandria; and a glovemaker's son who flouts convention in pursuit of the woman he loves. Above all, it is a tender and unforgettable reimagining of a boy whose life has been all but forgotten, but whose name was given to one of the most celebrated plays ever written.
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Biography, Children's, Education, Historical, Hobbies and Interests, Inspirational, Memoir, True Story, Young Adults
Author: William Kamkwamba When William Kamkwamba was just 14 years old, his family told him that he must leave school and come home to work on the farm - they could no longer afford his fees. This is his story of how he found a way to make a difference, how he bought light to his family and village, and hope to his nation. Malawi is a country battling AIDS, drought and famine, and in 2002, a season of floods, followed by the most severe famine in fifty years, brought it to its knees. Like the majority of the population, William's family were farmers. They were totally reliant on the maize crop. By the end of 2001, after many lean and difficult years, there was no more crop. They were running out of food - had nothing to sell - and had months until they would be able to harvest their crop again. Forced to leave school at 14 years old, with no hope of raising the funds to go again, William resorted to borrowing books from the small local library to continue his education. One day, browsing the titles, he picked up a book about energy, with a picture of a wind turbine on the front cover. Fascinated by science and electricity, but knowing little more about the technology, William decided to build his own. Ridiculed by those around him, and exhausted from his work in the fields every day, and using nothing more than bits of scrap metal, old bicycle parts and wood from the blue gum tree, he slowly built his very own windmill. This windmill has changed the world in which William and his family live. Only 2 per cent of Malawi has electricity; William's windmill now powers the lightbulbs and radio for his compound. He has since built more windmills for his school and his village. When news of William's invention spread, people from across the globe offered to help him. Soon he was re-enrolled in college and travelling to America to visit wind farms. This is his incredible story. William's dream is that other African's will learn to help themselves - one windmill and one light bulb at a time - and that maybe one day they will be able to power their own computers, and use the internet, and see for themselves how his life has changed after picking up that book in the library.
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Author: Kevin Shillington This fourth edition of this best-selling core history textbook offers a richly illustrated, single volume, narrative introduction to African history, from a hugely respected authority in the field. The market-leading range of illustrated material from prior editions is now further improved, featuring not only additional and redrawn maps and a refreshed selection of photographs, but the addition of full colour to make these even more instructive, evocative and attractive. Already hugely popular on introductory African History courses, the book has been widely praised for its engaging and readable style, and is unrivalled in scope, both geographically and chronologically - while many competitors limit themselves to certain regions or eras, Shillington chronicles the entire continent, from prehistory right up to the present day. For this new edition, both content and layout have been thoroughly refreshed and restructured to make this wealth of material easily navigable, and even more appealing to students unfamiliar with the subject.
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