African Picture Books

During the past fortnight as we ‘toured the world‘ we discovered some new African picture books, we also enjoyed a few shared previously.

Handsome Hog – Mweney Hadithi
An African animal tale; on the grassy African Plain, Handsome Hog had a beautiful smooth coat and an extremely elegant tail, he was exceptionally vain.  The tale unfolds as to how Handsome Hog lost his looks and became a Warthog.  An easily understood moral. Text is easy to follow and pictures are bright. Recommend

Lila and the Secret of Rain – David Conway
For months the sun has burned down on the Kenyan village. It is too hot to gather firewood, to weed the garden, to milk the cow.  Without rain the well will run dry and the crops fail.  When Lila’s grandfather whispers to her the secret of rain, she set out to talk to the sky from the tallest mountain.  She tells the sky the saddest thing she knows, the rain pours and she saves the village.  Beautiful illustrations. Highly recommended.

A Song for Jamela – Niki Daly
Jamela is bored during the school holidays, her aunt offers her a job in her hair saloon where she meets Afro-Idols celebrity, Miss Bambi Chaka Chaka having her hair set before the show.  Whilst Miss Chaka Chaka dozes as Aunty Beauty designs her starry hairdo a fly buzzes and a hilarious result unfolds.  Jamela saves the day.  A bouncy, contemporary book with lively illustrations.  Recommend.

Mbobo Tree – Glenda Millard
In the cleft of a rock, on the crest of a hill grows a tree that belongs to no-one and everyone.  A baby girl is found swinging in the branches of the tree and she is adopted and loved by the whole village. However Tiranamba never speaks until one day when the tree is threatened.  Poignant ending, beautiful illustrations. Highly recommended.

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