#Article (Archive)

Peter Sankofa and the Family Afro, Children’s book for the summer vacation

Jun 29, 2012, 2:54 PM

Kapeni Meleesi,

Greenshack productions, 2008

‘Every night Peter has a dream that is based on stories he has heard and events that have happened during the day. What Peter loves is that, in his dreams, he always meets different characters, gets to experience their lives and visits many different places. Sometimes along with his family and friends, he discovers all that is to be found, things that were lost and untold and the blue prints to why things and how they come to be..’. This juicy note on the blurb is enough to raise the taste buds of child readers, especially for the forthcoming summer vacation.

This book is indeed child friendly, not only for the titles, the storyline but more so for the bold illustrations that is splash on each and every page. The author seems to be bent on giving African children a more familiar face in children books different from the usual staple of European faces.

In this book, the faces of the characters such as Peter, Mother Nzinga or Sankofa are black and the hair are done in the good old afro style just as the black panthers or Angela Davis. This is a sudden and evocative move from the usual children readers. In many ways, therefore, a book such as this one has also got a cultural message for its young readers.

The style of the author is simple and direct using short, sentences such as ‘And one has a lion’s head’ p.9; or shorter still, but no less evocative ‘What is going on?’, p.3.

As the summer holidays approaches, I strongly recommend this beautiful book for vacationing kids, but beware, it can raise the eyebrows of even a perceptive adult reader.

Highly recommended.


Available at Timbooktoo, Tel 4494345.