Dancing with the Witchdoctor

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9780060186272: Dancing with the Witchdoctor

A collection of beautifully written stories recreates four stunning African tales about plantation owners, silverback gorillas, corrupt officials, poachers, priests, tribesman, and witchdoctors.

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Review:

Kelly James has been an international private investigator on five continents, but it was in Africa that she realized her "greatest adventures and most memorable insights into the human experience." Given the scope of her work--investigating murders, missing persons, safari accidents, and tangled multinational affairs in the face of such obstacles as lions, famine, kidnappers, and tribal warfare--James takes adventure and insight into territory barely imaginable to the rest of us. The result is a stunning quartet of tales of her most memorable adventures.

In the opening story, "Detour," James travels to Mombasa, Kenya, to determine whether the death of a remarkable coffee plantation owner was suicide or murder and to hunt for a missing inheritance. Along the way she discovers a mysterious, top-secret school in the jungle. On a "pleasure" trip to Rwanda to see mountain gorillas, accompanied by a morose American teenager, James is caught in gorilla-poaching crossfire and faces the sort of impossible questions Africa so frequently poses--whose life is more valuable, that of an African child or a baby gorilla? In Beira, a coastal city in Mozambique, she and her friend David are given one day to search for David's missing mother and sister while the Russians pull out, guerrilla fighters approach, and a mass demonstration circles the wreckage. And in the final dramatic story, James just barely survives renegade Turkana warriors, 120-degree heat, starvation, crocodiles, broken ribs, and a head injury in the search for the lost Dr. Kali, an English-educated Turkana witchdoctor. James is truly an audacious explorer--skilled not only in a number of languages but also in living with almost nothing and in the most hostile of environments. She is also tough on her clients. However, just when you think you're reading nothing more than a very good mystery, complete with colorful international characters and whodunit conundrums, accompanied by a woman long on smarts and balls but short on compassion, she thrusts you squarely into the heart of Africa, where it is impossible not to feel deeply. These are haunting stories written by a remarkable woman who knows not only how to live a life of risk, but how to tell a terrific story. --Lesley Reed

About the Author:

Kelly James is an international investigator. She also gives seminars on international business culture and, when time allows, lectures to third world university women on the international job market. Aside from English, James also speaks Swahili, Zulu, Spanish, and Greek. She lives mostly in Mexico.

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James, Kelly
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ISBN 10: 0060186275 ISBN 13: 9780060186272
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Book Description William Morrow & Company, Scranton, Pennsylvania, U. S. A., 2001. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. Illustrated by Smith, Doug (Woodcut on Jacket) (illustrator). Stated First Edition. In this autobiographical series of seven moving short stories based on her experiences in Africa, Kelly James draws us into the mystery and adventure that she experienced. She navigates among warring political factions, poachers, tribesmen, witchdoctors, prostitutes, the poverty stricken, and the sick. In these pages she exposes us to a world where truth is ephemeral, where compassion, though frail, still seeps through the grit and dust. "Witchdoctor" captures a journey into the author's own heart of darkness. This is the author's debut book. ; 8vo - over 7¾ - 9¾" tall. Bookseller Inventory # 001322

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