Nearly one hundred full-color photographs take young readers on a thirteen-country African safari that captures the rich diversity of African people, animals, and landscapes, from the desert Sahara to the rainforests of Zaire.
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Grade 3-5-A children's coffee-table book that has beautiful, high-quality, full-color photographs of African landscapes, animals, and people. The author participated in an expedition that began in Morocco and covered 13 countries, including Algeria, Nigeria, Zaire, Burundi, and Malawi, and ended in Zimbabwe. That journey provides the narrative backbone for the pictures and for the simple, pedestrian text, which unfortunately does not convey much adventure or excitement. Each country is covered in one or two double-page spreads, with the exception of Tanzania, whose treatment is extended by the author's account of climbing Mount Kilimanjaro. Kreikemeier's sole political comment is inexplicably reserved for Zambia-he says that it is "...a country plagued with debt and political unrest." This is surprising, given the economic and political turmoil in some of the other countries he visited. While the wide variety of African landscapes is celebrated, the continent is seen as a tourist would see it-from the outside. People (especially south of the Sahara) are shown mainly in exotic costumes, participating in ritual activities. The predominant sense is of how different "they" are from "us," and readers come away with little new insight into life in Africa. Veronica Ellis's Afrobets First Book about Africa (Just Us, 1990) is a better introduction.
Susan Giffard, Midtown Ethical Culture School, New York City
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.
An oddly unsatisfying account of a naturalist/photographer's 16,000-mile journey through 13 African countries. Traveling with a group of tourists in a custom-built truck--on an itinerary avoiding political trouble spots--Kreikemeier passed through every kind of landscape, including Kilimanjaro's snow field; his big, sun- drenched color photos expertly capture the drama of Victoria Falls and other natural features as well as close views of wildlife. The text offers less: condensing six months of travel into a few anecdotal paragraphs and captions per page robs the narrative of continuity and any sense of time or distance, while occasional piquant details--the eerie moaning of wind in the baobabs, or a list of belongings crammed into the author's 47-pound allotment- -only point up a tendency toward bland generalities (``Elephants are extremely interesting animals''). Except for a few shots of beaming, ragged young folk, a session with a shaman and his prognosticating land crab (``Fortunately for me, the sorcerer interpreted this as a sign that the rest of the expedition would be successful,'' Kreikemeier condescendingly remarks), and some group shots of herders and dancers, the people of Africa are not much in evidence here. Visually enticing, but not as thoughtful as Chiasson's African Journey (1987). (Nonfiction. 10-12) -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
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Book Description Golden Books, 1993. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110307156605
Book Description Golden Books. PAPERBACK. Book Condition: New. 0307156605 New Condition. Bookseller Inventory # NEW7.1913504