Sunday, March 01, 2009

Why isn't there a Rivers of Fire by an African author?

Whenever I occasionally read the books that Elliot is reading, just for a quick evening of entertainment, like tonight, when I read Patrick Carman's Rivers of Fire, the second, I guess, of his Atherton books, and I find a charming though clunky prose styling, reworking of the Pinocchio story, not as good as Spielberg's AI, which tops my list, I do wonder why such easy to write books aren't being produced by African writers adapted to African settings. I mean, the market for books in Africa has to be bigger than the market that confronted Jules Verne 150 years ago. So where are the authors and the publishers? I mean, complex novels of the post-colonial condition are fine, but for goodness' sake write some children's books, will you? Chinua Achebe, as I noted previously, did his time with the excellent, if a trifle boring, Chike and the River.

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