Novel predicting Kenyan situation selected by 'The Bookseller'

Welsh Books Council

Novel predicting Kenyan situation selected by 'The Bookseller' - 08 January 2008

Just Another Mzungu Passing Through  is the debut novel from Jim W. Bowen. Through the story of Griff, a naive young teacher, and his new relationships with Kenyans and his fellow teachers who are living temporarily in Kenya, the reader is exposed to both Griff’s awe at the wonder and beauty of the country and his disillusion at the poverty and corruption that are rife.

At the same time as being an engrossing tale of travel and friendships it is an ongoing social commentary that qualifies the fiction. The book is full of heart-rending moments, as a result of horror and despair, and also because of the power of the dignity and determination of the people experiencing such desperation.

The content of this work is fictional but all the events related are the real experiences of the author or his friends. The novel could be viewed as a metaphor for the actions of the white western world in the affairs of Africa. The underlying themes revealed in the novel through both the narrative and the historical references present a chilling picture of what could happen if an election went wrong - a situation that has very recently unravelled itself in front of the world’s media.

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