Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The River and the Source” as Want to Read:
The River and the Source
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The River and the Source

4.08  ·  Rating Details ·  193 Ratings  ·  25 Reviews
In 1995, this novel won both the Jomo Kenyatta Literature Prize, and the Commonwealth Writers Prize Best First Book in the Africa Region. Now reprinted, it remains in great demand. An epic story spanning cultures, it tells the lives of three generations of women. It traces the story of Akoko in her rich traditional Luo setting, through to the children who live and die in ...more
Paperback, 292 pages
Published December 29th 2004 by Focus Books
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The River and the Source, please sign up.

Popular Answered Questions

Mercy "in the smoke filled house of Aketch..." the first page begins with the birth of Akoko, a female child in Luo culture. A girl who dares to be…more"in the smoke filled house of Aketch..." the first page begins with the birth of Akoko, a female child in Luo culture. A girl who dares to be different and upon which the entire lineage in the book is based(less)
Things Fall Apart by Chinua AchebeHalf of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi AdichiePurple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi AdichieSo Long a Letter by Mariama BâDisgrace by J.M. Coetzee
African Fiction
42nd out of 429 books — 280 voters
The Man Without Qualities by Robert MusilThe Kite Runner by Khaled HosseiniThe Arabian Nights by AnonymousDon Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes SaavedraTo Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Around the World in 100 Books
275th out of 850 books — 480 voters


More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Andrew Kirimi
Sep 19, 2012 Andrew Kirimi rated it it was amazing
I read this book countless times between the ages of 16 and 20 and to date it remains my all time favourite book by an African author. As a huge supporter of all forms of feminist movements, I loved the fact that most of the story lines covered over the 4 generations are led by very strong female characters; all the way from the headstrong Akoko in the 1800's to Awiti and her children (Vera specifically!!)in the late 1900's. Faith, hard work, discipline, love, family and knowledge of self stand ...more
Rachel
Jul 11, 2013 Rachel rated it it was amazing
I read this book in high School (as a compulsory literary text), really loved it, so much that I re-read it again and again. It also marked the beginning of my fascination with the Luo Culture. Last year, I was finally able to visit Kit-Mikayi, and I could still recall Mark Anthony Oloo Sigu's description of his homeland Seme, and was awed by the magnificence of the huge rocks. Beautiful narrative, lovely blend of the traditional and modern, not forgetting the strong women who keep the family's ...more
Neville Tirimba Ogoti
Sep 28, 2015 Neville Tirimba Ogoti rated it it was ok
Omogano tori mobe korende enchera egetabu eke kerikire ngechieti gosansamora amanyinga ane nonya ng'ake. 'Omoriki omuya noori okorika ase chinkwana chitari chia botambe.
Me
Jun 25, 2014 Me rated it it was amazing
Did this as set book in Highschool literature. Awesome read, still retains a copy in my library almost 15yrs later
Kagwima Wakahora
The book inspired my vocation too as a Priest
Mercy
Nov 08, 2016 Mercy rated it really liked it
A wonderful read... although the author is clearly a feminist. She kills all the male characters in the book to strngthen the female characters. An Interesting real alll the same exploring issues faced in the African setrting.
Miss Mugambi
Aug 17, 2013 Miss Mugambi rated it it was amazing
Its a very intresting story particularly about the luo culture but what i like about the story most escpecially from Akoko is that women are people of power and we can decide for ourselves what kind of life we want ahead of us and touch the life of others and be their inspiration in an indirect manner
Nancy Oyula
Jun 27, 2016 Nancy Oyula rated it it was amazing
Possibly one of the best books to ever be published by a Kenyan author. I've read it a couple of times in my life. Every time I spot it, I feel like I should read it again from page one. I loved all the characters.
Mbogo J
Dec 30, 2015 Mbogo J rated it liked it
It has its good bits but its character development is wanting, aside from Akoko and a few characters, the rest are given like three sentences worth of a description and to make matters worse the book has like '500' characters
Hardcorekancil
Jun 05, 2012 Hardcorekancil rated it it was ok
Shelves: own
The first part of the story captivated my attention, as the intrigue unfolds in a traditional Luo setting. However, parts 2 and 3 did not live up to the expectations set by the beginning of the novel. Something was clearly lost in the flash-forward.
Nje
Nov 26, 2012 Nje rated it really liked it
I last read this book more than 11 years ago. It was the perfect school lit for kenyan secondary school. I just know that for the young girls in Kenya, this book represented our hope and our future as strong black women. I would read it again if I got it in my hands
Caleb Bett
Nov 07, 2013 Caleb Bett rated it it was amazing
in my view...one of the greatest African women writers and overall ranks at the top!! Such a great read Margaret A. Ogola
Melanee
Mar 10, 2011 Melanee rated it liked it
It was a warm story displaying the importance of family over the generations. I found myself more intrigued by the words of wisdom passed down through the years. I'm sure my kids will be hearing a few of them.
Wahu
Apr 29, 2015 Wahu rated it it was amazing
I read this back in high school, and recently found it again, and re-read. It's a wonderful book, and i'll probably be reading it a third, and fourth time.
Valerie Ndombi
A lesson in persistence, perserverance and never losing faith & hope. A journey through generations and the ever changing way of life
Heather
Jun 01, 2009 Heather rated it really liked it
This was recommended by one of my Kenyan co-workers. It is a story of a kenyan girl child named Akoko during the early days of colonization by the british.
Kevin Murungi
Jun 02, 2014 Kevin Murungi rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jose Manuel Gude
Aug 25, 2013 Jose Manuel Gude rated it it was amazing
Amazing book, full of character and strength. One book about life and death, looking the problems in the eye. And about virtue, virtue in real life for authentic people.
John
Jan 03, 2010 John rated it really liked it
This book shows how hard work and love for one's family can turn bleak circumstances into a bright future
Michael Opondo
Jul 18, 2013 Michael Opondo rated it it was amazing
Margaret really brought out the complete way of life of (us) luos with no exceptions,no distortion whatsoever.Great one!
Apudo Apudö
Apudo Apudö rated it really liked it
Aug 22, 2013
Rebecca
Rebecca rated it it was amazing
Jan 22, 2013
Mike/
Mike/ rated it liked it
Feb 24, 2011
Jade Makory
Jade Makory rated it liked it
Mar 01, 2015
Theresa
Theresa rated it really liked it
Jun 05, 2014
Lisa May
Lisa May rated it liked it
Oct 30, 2014
Stephen
Stephen rated it really liked it
Oct 25, 2015
Michelle Gillespie
Michelle Gillespie rated it it was ok
Apr 11, 2011
Nyambura
Nyambura rated it liked it
Aug 11, 2014
Kamud
Kamud rated it it was amazing
Jun 21, 2014
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Goodreads Librari...: Please merge these editions 2 11 Feb 03, 2015 01:50PM  
COMPARE AND CONTRAST CHARACTER TRAITS OF TONY AND AORO. 2 9 Jan 27, 2014 04:41AM  
  • The River
  • Looking for a Rain God and Other Short Stories from Africa
  • Good Morning Comrades
  • How to Write about Africa
  • Going Down River Road
  • The River Between
  • It's Our Turn to Eat
  • Wakefield
  • Paradise
  • Fuga nelle tenebre
  • Heart and Science
  • The Green Belt Movement: Sharing the Approach and the Experience
  • Genealogía de una bruja
  • La Petite Sorcière
  • Tuttle in the Balance
  • Tick Bite Fever
  • The Concubine
  • طائر الشؤم

Share This Book