- Paperback: 336 pages
- Publisher: Random House Trade Paperbacks; Reprint edition (March 11 2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0375758992
- ISBN-13: 978-0375758997
- Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 1.8 x 20.3 cm
- Shipping Weight: 181 g
- Average Customer Review: 119 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #67,928 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight: An African Childhood Paperback – Mar 11 2003
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Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight: An African Childhood
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During all of the years of civil unrest, her father was often away serving as a soldier for the government. Her mother was a very emotional, but strong woman who tried her best to hold on even when she saw her children die and she had to continue to run the farm alone while her husband was out fighting. Everyone carried guns and the children were taught how to load a gun as soon as they were agile enough to do it.
Alexandra, called Bobo by her family gives us this remembrance that she had from the age of three. ï¿½Mum says, ï¿½Donï¿½t come creeping into our room at night.ï¿½ They sleep with loaded guns beside them on the bedside rugs. She says, ï¿½Donï¿½t startle us when weï¿½re sleeping.ï¿½ ï¿½We might shoot you.ï¿½ ï¿½Oh.ï¿½ ï¿½ By mistake.ï¿½ ï¿½Okay, I wonï¿½t.ï¿½ replied Bobo.
I didnï¿½t want this story to end and hope that the author writes another book and gives us an update on her remarkable family.
Alexandra Fuller recounts her experiences growing up in various African countries, part of the white colonialist presence in Rhodesia and other countries. Her family endures more than its share of hardships, and Ms. Fuller conveys them honestly, touchingly and in great detail. She does not shy away from some of the less flattering aspects of her parents' participation in a colonialist culture, nor does she pretend that they were free from any sort of prejudice toward the Africans with whom they lived. Yet Ms. Fuller does explain much of it - why her parents chose Africa and Rhodesia, Malawi and so forth, why she viewed the natives as she did, what she and her sister feared, and so on and so forth.
While this frankness is refreshing, what makes this book so excellent is Ms. Fuller's writing, which is simply brilliant. She describes the lush landscapes, the danger of mines, the violence, the poverty and so on with such intense and vivid details that the book truly comes to life. Her experiences growing up in Africa may have been in some ways similar to those of other colonialists, yet she makes her story unique through her insights, her sympathy and empathy, and through the changes that she describes - those of the countries in which she lives, herself, her mother, father, sister and others. That Ms. Fuller's possess an incredible gift for writing is obvious, as is her command of language, with every word and phrase clearly chosen with great care.
I could not recommend this book more highly. I really believe that it is one of the best that I have ever read and certainly one of the best in the past several years. Already I have begun lending it out, and those who have read it have shared my fascination. Simply put, it is not to mbe missed!
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