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2014 Reading Report—Challenges

January 9, 2015

Africa Reads Challenge, 2014

I read a total of 23 books by African authors for this challenge. In past years, I have focused on books by African women, but this year I branched out. As always, I loved some of the books by women that I read especially, The Moor’s Account, by Laila Lalami, and Distant View of a Minaret, by Alifa Rifaat. More surprisingly, among my favorites were Wizard of Crow, by Ngugi wa Thiong’o, a man from Kenya and Burger’s Daughter, by Nadine Gordimer, a white African woman.

Here is a list of all the books I read for this challenge. Thanks to Kinna for hosting it and to all of you who contributed to my ever-growing pile of African books I want to read.


***The Moor’s Account, by Laila Lalami.

***Distant View of a Minaret, by Alifa Rifaat.

Sweetness in the Belly, by Camilla Gibb.

Secret Son, by Laila Lalami.

Segu, by Maryse Conde.

Zenzele: A Letter to My Daughter, by J. Nozipo Maraire.

On Black Sister Street, by Chika Unigwe.

True Murder, by Yaba Badoe.

Tropical Fish: Tales from Entebbe, by Doreen Baingana.

Hope and Other Dangerous Pursuits, by Laila Lalami.

Kehinde, by Buchi Emecheta.

Ancestor Stones, by Aminatta Forna.

In Dependence, by Sarah Ladipo Mayika.

Dilemma of a Ghost and Anowa, by Ama Ata Aidoo.

Daughters who Walk this Path, Yejide Kilanko.

Fiction by African men

***Wizard of Crow, by Ngugi wa Thiong’o.

Grain of Wheat, by Ngugi Wa Thiong’o

Gifts, by Nuruddin Farah.

Death and the King’s Horseman, by Wole Soyinka.

Fiction by a white African woman

***Burger’s Daughter, by Nadine Gordimer

July’s People, by Nadine Gordimer.

Nonfiction by African/African American Women

The Bright Continent, by Dayo Olopade.

New News from Africa, by Charlayne Hunter-Galt.



The number of books by Australian women writers is down this year, not intentionally but because I got caught up exploring the literature of other parts of the world. I only read 14 books for the AWW challenge, and only 2 by Indigenous women. I hope to read more in 2015.

My favorites were rather different books, but all of them were especially impressive and all recognized by others: The Forgotten Rebels of Eureka, by Clare Wright, Letters to the End of Love, by Yvette Walker, Mullumbimby, by Melissa Lucashenko, and The Mountain, by Drusilla Modjeska


***The Mountain, by Drusilla Modjeska (review to come soon)

My Beautiful Enemy, by Cory Taylor.

Amy‘s Children, by Olga Masters.

Letters to the End of Love, by Yvette Walker.

A Curious Intimacy, by Jessica White.

Fiction by Indigenous authors

Swallow the Air, by Tara June Winch.

***Mullumbimby, by Melissa Lucashenko.

Fiction about Indigenous people

Love Like Water, by Meme McDonald.


***The Forgotten Rebels of Eureka, by Clare Wright.

Bibliodiversity, by Susan Hawthorne.

Surviving Peace, by Olivia Simic.

A Change of Skies, by Yasmine Goonerante.

The Coral Battleground, by Judith Wright.

Non-fiction/memoir about Indigenous people

Listening to Country, by Ros Moriarty.


Lupa and Lamb, by Susan Hawthorne.



I read a total of 20 books for the South Asian Women Writers Challenge in 2014. Thanks to the hosts and all who recommended books for it.


***The Space Between Us, by Thrity Umrigar.

***The Tutor of History, by Manjushree Thapa.

The Shadow of the Crescent Moon, by Fatima Bhutto.

If Today Be Sweet, by Thrity Umrigar.

Leela’s Book, by Alice Albinina.

The Sweetness of Tears, by Nafisa Haji.

Love Marriage, by V.V. Ganeshananthan.

The Upstairs Wife, by Rafia Zakaria.

The Story Hour, by Thrity Umrigar

Haveli, by Zeenat Mahal.

Ladies Coupe, by Anita Nair.

Town of Love, by Anne Ch. Ostby.

Ganges Boy by Archana Prasanna.


River of Fire, Qurratulain Hyder

My Temples, Too, by Qurratulain Hyder.

The Twentieth Wife, by Indu Sundaresan.

Equal of the Sun, by Anita Amirrezvani.

Far Horizon, by Meira Chand.


A Princess Remembers: The Memoirs of the Mahrani of Jaiper, by Gayatri Devi.

The Pink Sari Revolution, by Amana Fontanella-Khan.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. January 9, 2015 10:04 pm

    Wow, you really managed to read a lot of books for each of these! I’m glad to hear that you managed to find a copy of The Mountain and that you enjoyed it. I’ll look forward to your review.

  2. January 10, 2015 12:47 pm

    Well done indeed, a great list of recommends for reading around the world.

  3. January 11, 2015 3:20 pm

    I also read a number of other excellent books by women from the Far East, Southeast Asia, and the Americas that didn’t fit on this page. I am not organized enough to list them, but check out the place categories on my blog.

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