Life Altering, June 16, 2004


Reviewer: Chris Pierson from Elgin, IL United States

I read Herbstein's novel just prior to departing the US for Ghana. The novel is so well written that I actually felt as if I'd been at Elmina castle and travelled the dark African night with Nandizi. Upon entering the castle at Elmina, strangely, I knew my way around. Everything was exactly as pictured in my mind's eye. I connected with the novel's protagonist and had a re-new-ed pride in the spirit of my ancestors. It is well worth struggling through the unfamiliar names to discover the familiar in the human spirit that spans the ages.

 A must read for everyone!!!!, December 17, 2005

Reviewer: JaJa (U.S.) -

I was required to read this book for my African history class. I really liked the book because it connected the pieces of the slave trade from Africa (Ghana) starting with how the girl got into slavery to being sold at the coast to life on the ship, finally working as a slave in the New World (Brazil). Also, it has a lot historical context/traditions (of Yoruba, Asante, and others) incorporated into the book. I think everyone should read just to understand the complexities of the slave trade b/c the book really doesn't point fingers at one group of people, it points them at everyone for what happened dealing with slavery. It does good job of dispelling the myths of slavery and enables the reader to realize the full psychological along with the physical impact of slavery.

For a review by Kristel Nana-Mvogo (in French) see

("Avec l‘histoire d‘Ama, toute l‘expérience des Africains du XVIIIč sičcle (esclaves ou non) est ainsi personnifiée d‘une maničre réaliste est inoubliable. Ce roman explique également trčs bien les causes et les origines de l‘esclavage, ainsi que les conséquences du commerce triangulaire, qui furent désastreuses pour la population africaine. Je n‘ai trouvé Ama qu‘en version anglaise. Mais le style littéraire est relativement simple ; des lycéens peuvent donc lire ce roman sans grande difficulté, je pense. C‘est en effet un bon complément aux cours d‘histoire.")

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