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Season of Blood: A Rwandan Journey

4.11  ·  Rating Details  ·  438 Ratings  ·  44 Reviews
When President Habyarimana’s jet was shot down in April 1994, Rwanda erupted into a hundred-day orgy of killing – which left up to a million dead. Fergal Keane travelled through the country as the genocide was continuing, and his powerful analysis reveals the terrible truth behind the headlines.

‘A tender, angry account … As well as being a scathing indictment – Keane says
Paperback, 224 pages
Published April 25th 1996 by Penguin (first published 1996)
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(showing 1-30 of 1,218)
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Oct 07, 2012 Mandy rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: those interested in foreign affairs, African history
I've read several disparaging remarks about Fergal Keane, the author, and his works as a journalist and presenter. People have called him arrogant and narcissistic but I beg to differ. Keane's account of travelling through a country undergoing genocide and war; his visits to a UN refugee camp in Tanzania and their journey through Burundi to get to government-held areas in the South of Rwanda is written with honesty, sensitivity and insight. Far from "narcissistic", Keane asks questions of everyo ...more
Jul 17, 2008 Holly rated it it was amazing
I thought this book was excellent, it gives the perfect combination of historical context and personal account. It's a memoir, and that's exactly the kind of book I enjoy most. There were definitely a couple of parts in the book where I absolutely couldn't put it down.

The only bad thing about this book was that, if I hadn't read anything about Rwandan history before, the history provided in this book was a little cloudy. Hard to follow.

Other than that, I think this book was excellent.
Mar 10, 2015 Valissa rated it liked it
Shelves: library
Apparently I have reached the age when I can spend a Friday evening reading about genocide and call myself content. This is not a full history of the Rwandan genocide, but offers a brief explanation of how/what/why/when/where during a journalists trip through part of the country.

It is harrowing, horrible, affecting, confusing, depressing, amazing, and the courage of so many people is vastly contrasted against mob mentality, bigots, and extreme grudge holders. It is amazing that after, what, 600
Jun 24, 2015 Karen rated it really liked it
Shelves: travel-the-world
Fergal Keane is a Journalist for the BBC, and this book is a memoir of his reporting of the Rwandan Genocide. This was a difficult book to read, but necessary to understand what happened in Rwanda in 1994. The Rwanda holocaust is as important as the Nazi holocaust against the Jews during WWII, and the methods used (scapegoating, in particular) by The Hutus against the Tutsis.

I do not understand how the U.S. could not declare what happened in Rwanda: 1 million people slaughtered in 100 days, a g
Amy Kannel
Sep 26, 2013 Amy Kannel rated it really liked it
Shelves: rwanda, africa, memoir, own
This was very different from other books I have read about the 1994 Rwanda genocide. Written within a year after the fact by a BBC journalist who traveled in the country while the killings were still happening, it has a feel of immediacy that makes the horrors palpable. The prologue provides a valuable analysis of Rwandan history that led to this tragedy, and the author's first-person observations and reflections make the horrors palpable. Since he is an outsider, he can provide a somewhat dista ...more
Tom Elder
Jan 04, 2015 Tom Elder rated it it was amazing
Fergal Keane. Real life.
Season of Blood.
This is one mans story of the 1994 Rwandan genocide. This book is possibly one of the hardest books I've ever read, but it was mesmerising and I could not stop reading it. How can man be as evil as this even if they are from different tribes. I would like to think this will never happen again, but who knows. After all this happened only 20 years ago. If you read only 1 book on this horrifying course of events, then make it this one, you won't be disappoint
Adrian Fingleton
Sep 16, 2015 Adrian Fingleton rated it it was amazing
Having just come back from Rwanda and visited some of the locations where Fergal Keane wended his way in the immediate aftermath of the 1994 Rwandan genocide I was really interested in his observations. I thought it was a very good book.

It's short, long on humanity, documenting the horror that unfolded. He was 21 years younger then, but you sense that this situation surpassed any other scene of devastation and suffering that he had seen before. It's well constructed as a journey from N to S and
May 09, 2012 Tim rated it it was amazing
It's odd to have to rate a book like this. I feel odd, at any rate. As you can imagine, it's not an easy read in parts. But Keane managed to make me feel both heartbroken and angry, so I suppose he pulls it off.
Wes Freeman
Jun 25, 2008 Wes Freeman rated it liked it
So a Celtic-name-having journalist heads to Rwanda for the aftermath of a genocide and loses his shit. As well he should. Got the feeling from reading this book that Fergal ain't want to go to Rwanda in the first dadgum place, and ain't want to write a book about it when he left, but couldn't figure out what else to do once he'd been. I mean, you see a genocide, you write a book, right? Go to a publisher and tell him/her, "So I was in Rwanda @ 14 years ago and I'd like for you to pay me $ to wri ...more
Alice Brandli
Jan 17, 2014 Alice Brandli rated it really liked it
Twenty years ago in 1994 a genocide took place in Rwanda. The BBC journalist who arrived in the middle of the killing kept a diary. This diary is the bones of this incredibly moving account of his time, and the people he meets along the way in Rwanda. Fergal describes concisely the lead up the genocide. Historical analysis of the Rwanda, Tutsi and Hutus and the Habyarimana government, all mixed with eyewitness accounts. The eyewitness accounts are unforgettable, he doesn't shy away from hiding t ...more
Drew Doherty
Oct 07, 2012 Drew Doherty rated it really liked it

It's hard to rate a book like this, it is a gruesome story but it is so important people read it. The book is well written and at times I felt compelled to keep reading. It tells the story of genocide in Rwanda, the slaughter of innocent Tutsi's by Hutu's while the world looked the other way. The Belgians and the UN ran away deserting a small band of brave UN troops who were forced to watch the slaughter. The French come out of the story heavily implicated in the genocide as it armed and suppor
Dawn Garcia
Oct 12, 2015 Dawn Garcia rated it really liked it
A brutal and raw account of one journalist's journey to discover what he thought would be the betterment of a civilization only to discover the atrocities of monsters.
Jun 05, 2015 Sanjeev rated it it was amazing
Found this in a basement of a rental. Pretty horrific accounts of genocide, but worth the read.
Jun 04, 2009 Farrah rated it really liked it
Shelves: school-reading
Not only did I like this book, but I learned a lot about an important event in African Studies. The story is not for the faint of heart though. I would recommend it to anyone who wants to understand the history of the Hutus and Tutsis and also about the effect that media has on even remote areas like the jungles of Rwanda.

The only thing I can say I had an issue with is the fact that the British do not use commas like we do in the US. The lack of them in the appropriate places drove me bonkers. I
Derek Hall
Feb 12, 2014 Derek Hall rated it it was amazing
Still processing my feeling about this wonderful book. My mind easily could visualise the places Keane described, having recently visited many of these places and have seen the progress in 20 years since this horrific genocide. At this moment I am putting together my dissertation that looks at the churches role in bringing unity & reconciliation. How lovely it might be to have Keane go back and write a second book look at how Rwandan people are handling the past and moving forward.
May 16, 2007 Marypoppinsroks rated it really liked it
This book was written to be a personal account of a journalist's experience in Rwanda right after the end of the 1994 genocide. His experience is eye-opening and the writing is accessible, but the book provides very little context for the events at hand. It is worth reading to understand what the situation was like at the time, but if you want to really learn about the history and politics of the genocide and the civil war, you will need to look elsewhere.
Beryl Morago
Apr 01, 2016 Beryl Morago rated it it was amazing
This is the second book I've read about Rwanda. The author did very well in describing what he experienced. I may never understand why people will do such things. I expect nightmares similar to those I had after the first book.
Dennis Henn
Mar 27, 2011 Dennis Henn rated it really liked it
"In one hundred days up to one million people were hacked, shot, strangled, clubbed, and burned to death. Remember, carve this into your consciousness: one million." That line describes the Rwandan genocide of the nineties. Outside of a token U.N. presence, the world barely noticed. The Season of Blood is a journalist's account of how easily hate is promulgated, and how readily murder is justified.
Apr 23, 2009 Carolyne rated it liked it
This is Keane's personal account as a BBC reporter in Rwanda during the 1994 genocide, his narrative of traveling through the country at the time of the killings. Did not find it very gripping, but it's an easy book to read if you are interested in the bare bones of the genocide, particularly the history behind it.
Tiffany Mcintosh
Jan 31, 2011 Tiffany Mcintosh rated it it was amazing
This book really opened my eyes to what took place in Rwanda. I read this in university in one of my political science classes and although I read heaps of books in those years , this one has been the most memorable. I can still remember some of the brutal imagery that Keane depicted.
Oct 13, 2008 Pa rated it liked it
It's a young journalist's record of his experience of reporting Rwanda's genocide towards the end. It's finely written although it doesn't contain the broad historical context and penetrating analysis of global and regional politics that profoundly impact the story as Emma's War does.
Jul 18, 2011 Aramie rated it really liked it
This book was written by a BBC reporter after his visit to Rwanda in the tumultuous aftermath of the genocide that occured there in 1994. It seems a little odd to say that I am enjoying this book, so I will say that it is very informative & captured my interest.
Andrea Stenn
Oct 10, 2010 Andrea Stenn rated it liked it
This account follows Keane's trip to Rwanda and just over the border during the time of the Genocide. His experiences are graphic. And there's no question as to where he stands. If you want details of this shameful period, this is a good start.
Aug 23, 2007 Michelle rated it liked it
Recommends it for: anyone interested in Africa
For anyone interested in the bloodshed in Rwanda back in 1995. It tells the story of the bloodshed that occurred between ethinic groups. Not for the faint of heart but good for anyone interested in learning about the tragic events.
Aug 21, 2007 Nicholas rated it really liked it
One of the best examples of quality, hands-on investigative journalism. Really creates a picture you might not want to see, but brutally honest and sincere to the experience.
Kate Fletcher
Jul 06, 2007 Kate Fletcher rated it really liked it
A short history of the events which lead to the Rwandan slaughter of 1994. I cannot believe this is a story which took place during our lifetime. Disturbing.
Apr 25, 2009 Scott rated it liked it
A journalistic account of the Rwandan genocide as it was happening. I expected more but a decent book to inform more people of an African tragedy.
Mar 31, 2011 Phredric rated it it was amazing
It's strange to use a word like 'enjoyed' about such a book - but I found it a very powerful, honest and well written. Recommended to anyone
Timothy R.
Sep 12, 2007 Timothy R. rated it really liked it
I was a BBC junkie at the time and wanted to see how the reporters held up in print. The tales were devastating, but ones that need to be told.
Kevin p.
Feb 24, 2008 Kevin p. rated it it was amazing
A pretty great overview of the history leading up to the genocide and a shocking account of the actual genocide.
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