Moses, Citizen and Me

“Moses, Citizen & Me” by Delia Jarrett-Macauley (Sierra Leone)

Review

Readers were looking forward to this book and they all found the beginning very promising. However, although the topic of child soldiers was both a challenging and interesting one for a novel, they felt that the author did not quite succeed in making the story a good read. Most readers felt too distant from the narrator, Julia, whose motivations they could not quite grasp. They felt that the relationship between her uncle Moses, her cousin Citizen and herself were not well drawn and that the reader was not given enough insight into these two important characters. They found that the neighbour Anita and her two daughters were the most well developed characters in the book. Readers were disappointed by the parts of the story that take place in the forest with the child soldiers and Bemba G, as they found that the combination of dream sequences and reality simply confused them. Some readers liked the slow pace and the style of writing, and one reader described the plot as breathtaking. Overall, the book averaged a 6.5 out of 10.

Synopsis

Winner of The Orwell Prize for Political Writing 2006
When Julia flies in to war-scarred Sierra Leone from London, she is apprehensive about seeing her uncle Moses for the first time in twenty years. But nothing could have prepared her for her encounter with her eight-year-old cousin, Citizen, a former child soldier, and for the shocking truth of what he has done… Read more

Season 13 – “Politics and Religion” (Feb – Jun 2011)

“Moses, Citizen & Me” by Delia Jarrett-Macauley (Sierra Leone)
“Seeing” by José Saramago (Portugal) *
“My Name is Light” by Elsa Osorio (Argentina)
“The Eagle’s Throne” by Carlos Fuentes (Mexico)
“The God of Small Things” by Arundhati Roy (India)

* The book club favourite
In italics, Nicola’s Coup de Cœur

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