This is not a post about travel, but I wanted to mention some good books I am reading or have just read. This fall, I spent a lot of time reading about Africa, a continent I felt I knew way too little about. I am very interested in Zimbabwe, so many of the books were about that country, but I also enjoyed books about all of Africa. (Actually, I guess the post is somewhat travel related, after all!)
The best book about Africa I have read so far is The State of Africa by Martin Meredith. (I think it was published as "The Fate of Africa" in the US.) It is a history of Africa since independence and it is amazing in the level of depth that he is able to get into in 700 pages. Very well written and extremely engaging! The book really made me understand a lot about post-independence Africa. Highly recommended!
Books about Zimbabwe:
Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight by Alexandra Fuller. Fuller grew up in Zimbabwe and tells the story of her childhood and her family. Beautiful and heartbreaking.
When a Crocodile Eats the Sun: A Memoir of Africa by Peter Godwin. Just started! Written by a journalist who grew up in Zimbabwe.
Where We Have Hope: A Memoir of Zimbabwe by Andrew Meldrum. Meldrum moved to Zimbabwe in the early 1980s and became The Guardian's correspondent there. Personal, interesting, well written, great!
Mugabe: Power, Plunder, and the Struggle for Zimbabwe by Martin Meredith. Fascinating account of the life of Robert Mugabe. I read the earlier version (published in 2003 I think) and it gives a very complete picture of the president of Zimbabwe and his violent grip on the country.
African Tears: The Zimbabwe Land Invasions by Catherine Buckle. Buckle tells her own story, the story of her farm being taken over by Mugabe's so-called war veterans.
Other books I am currently reading:
The Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan. Boy, what in the world are we putting in our bodies??
Moon Handbook to Guatemala. I love the Nicaragua one so I decided to get the Guatemala one and hopefully I will put it to use soon!