10 Years of the Caine Prize for African Writing: Plus Coetzee, Gordimer, Achebe, Okri

The Caine Prize for African Writing, Editor New Internationalist $18.95 (228p) ISBN 978-1-906523-24-4
As exhibited in this collection, the Caine Prize, founded in 1999 in honor of the late Sir Michael Caine's work to popularize African writing in English, has spotlighted some exceptional writing; each prize-winning short story included here (the Caine is also known as the African Booker; as such, African winners of the Booker prize also appear) examines and explodes stereotypes about Africa and its literature. Characters reveal dignity and doubt in extraordinary situations, including a grandmother who abandons her frail husband in order to carry her grandchildren to safety in Nadine Gordimer's powerful ""The Ultimate Safari."" J. M. Coetzee's ""Nietverloren"" examines the changing face of Africa through the demise of a small family farm. Binyavanga Wainaina's ""Discovering Home,"" meanwhile, contrasts a young man's year at home in Kenya after several years of cosmopolitan Cape Town life. Despite a rich diversity of style and subject matter, each story, as described in Ben Okri's introduction, ""reveals what hides in people,"" offering intimate glimpses into an array of African lives. Anyone who enjoys realistic literary fiction will treasure this collection.
Reviewed on: 08/31/2009
Release date: 09/01/2009
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