Book : The Centre is Black
Author : Kahende, MGN
Publisher: Janus Publishing
Reviewer: Zenoyise Madikwa
The Centre is Black is one of the best books I have read recently.
Set in Guzania, a country under corrupt political rulers, the book highlights the plight of the people of the country.
The chronicle is a typical African story of corruption, greed and sexual scandal, though Guzania is in a post-colonial era.
It is a case study that explores recent trends and the political situations in Africa, and the need for change.
The author, who was born and educated in Kenya, says the story is not about his work, "but a personal concern with the tangible plight of the masses wallowing in poverty and despair in many African countries".
Kahende tells the story of Shaka, a simple boy born in the slums, who gets into trouble after experimenting with forbidden fruit. This happens after he falls in love with a top politician's daughter.
Shaka is the son of a late political activist and a great warrior, who played an active role in liberating the people of Guzania.
He takes off where his father left off. He saves his country by executing a plan of action that brings freedom, dignity and harmony.
Shaka is guided by a wise village elder, Agu, who gives him sage advice about life.
The theme provides a good account of modern Africa and communicates a message of hope amid all the evil happening in Guzania.
The book will leave you with a glimpse of insight about the plight of Africans during post-colonialism.
The 320-page book is an easy-to-read soft-cover. Once you pick it up, you will find it difficult to put down.
The author, who has travelled extensively and worked in several countries as a diplomat, is not only a good storyteller, but a wordsmith to boot.