Continuing the book "I Dreamed of Africa", this volume is written in episodes and covers Kuki's life over the last ten to 12 years.
She refers glancingly to the deaths of her husband and son, covering family issues, the conservation and preservation of the animals around her, the fear and beauty of being lost in the bush at night, a king cobra who visits the tree planted over Emanuele's grave and, in the eyes of the local Pokot women, therefore brings evidence that Emanuele's spirit is at peace, an encounter with a baby rhino and a new man in Kuki's life.
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 160 pages, b&w and colour photographs, maps, glossary
- Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
- Publication Date: 24/04/2014
- Category: Biography: historical, political & military
- ISBN: 9780140238464
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Review by nandadevi
I have to sympathise with some of the reviewers of Kuki Gallman's other work 'I Dreamed of Africa' who are exasperated by her obsession with death, grief and healing in her personal life. They probably, and I certainly, chose these books for the potential they had to reveal facets of Africa; the people, the landscapes, the animals and the spirit. It's a little frustrating to have someone who is so sensitive to the world around her restricting her observations to her own life. There's glimpses of Africa, but it always seems to be through the window and at a distance. Gallman never seems to get out of the bunker of her own thoughts and grieving. All that said, she is entitled to grieve, and to indulge herself in that and to take up with shamanism and religious beliefs. But it is telling that they aren't African beliefs that she connects with. Ultimately for all of her connection with Africa - which she 'proves' with her use of the local language - she seems to see herself and portray herself as a citizen of the world, an enthusiastic consumer and advocate for of any sort of spirituality that comes her way. it's as if the events that swept her up (and her husband and son away) could have as easily occurred in Manchester or Chicago.I can't recommend this book for anyone who is interested in Africa, because it's not about Africa. She has reduced the entire continent to background scenery. But if the reader is interested in the spiritual healing and recovery from grief there is something here for them. But I'd note again that there's no special African aspect to that spirituality - none at all. All that said, I'll keep this book because it is - ultimately - a story told with genuine feeling.