"I DIDN'T DO IT FOR YOU": How the World Betrayed a Small African Nation

Michela Wrong, Author . HarperCollins $25.95 (448p) ISBN 978-0-06-078092-0

Much like Wrong's In the Footsteps of Mr. Kurtz (2001), covering the reign of Zaire's brutal dictator Mobutu Sese Seko, this book taps at the world's conscience, asking who is to blame for the suffering and neglect of postcolonial African states; it takes Eritrea as case study—and victim. A veteran Africa correspondent for the Financial Times , Wrong writes in a pointedly digressive style full of narrative side roads that accommodate a daunting level of geographical and historical detail. Historical highlights include a colorful profile of the late 19th-century writer and Italian parliamentarian Ferdinando Marini that draws on his extensive memoirs about his tenure as the first civil governor of the region as an Italian colony. The early 1960s conflict, occupation and independence of this small neighbor to Ethiopia also make for a terrible, gripping story, including border disputes and bloody war with Ethiopia. A complicated history so punctuated with violence is not exactly easy to read about, but the author's extraordinary grasp of the postcolonial psyche and tormented national identity of this country makes it fascinating. Agent, Joy Harris. (June 14)

Reviewed on: 03/14/2005
Release date: 06/01/2005
Paperback - 432 pages - 978-0-00-715095-3
Ebook - 480 pages - 978-0-06-147670-9
Peanut Press/Palm Reader - 480 pages - 978-0-06-147668-6
Open Ebook - 480 pages - 978-0-06-147665-5
Ebook - 480 pages - 978-0-06-186066-9
Paperback - 432 pages - 978-0-06-078093-7
Show other formats
The Best Books, Emailed Every Week
Tip Sheet!