Saturday, 14 June 2008

Saturday Photo: Where the Wild African Violets Grow

It's always nice when a reviewer gets what you're been trying to do in a book. In today's Globe and Mail, Kim Barry Brunhuber seems to understand the moral ambiguities that I was trying to deal with in The Violets of Usambara.

"Travelling in the developing world makes you realize how softly you have to scratch at our altruistic ideology to get to the rich vein of self-interest that separates the West from the Rest, a phenomenon that Mary Soderstrom beautifully captures..." he writes. He makes the story of Thomas and Louise Brossard sound pretty compelling too, which is just what I hoped it would be.

The Globe and Mail is Canada's national newspaper and a good review there is always particularly welcome. I feel almost as good having read this one as I did in October 2001 when I finally saw wild African violets in their natural surrounding. The accompanying photo was taken then at the Amani Nature Reserve in Tanzania. The novel, by the way, is dedicated to the fine people who work there.

Note from Valentine's Day 2009: There's a new reading guide available for The Violets: Click here to find it.


Anne C. said...

Kim Barry Brunhuber was widely held to be the best looking boy to ever attend my high school. Congrats on the review!

Mary Soderstrom said...

He is indeed a good looking guy--as well as having good taste! I'm looking forward to reading his book about Sierra Leone too.