Rian's Reviews > Sosu's Call

Sosu's Call by Meshack Asare
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Feb 27, 09

bookshelves: international
Read in February, 2009

Summary: Sosu lives in a village in Ghana right on the shore of a lagoon. Though Sosu's legs aren't strong enough to walk on, he saves the village when it is threatened by a devastating storm.

Response: The story has beautiful figurative language describing the village, the storm, the sounds of the drum. The illustrations look like watercolors, and they convey the motion of the villagers running to save their neighbors from the storm and the emotions on Sosu's face as he faces this dire situation. Sosu's loving family has always supported him even though his legs keep him from doing what all the other children do, and in the end, the whole village works to celebrate Sosu and provide him with a new wheelchair. This boo would pair well with "Kami and the Yaks": both are about children with disabilities who "save the day" and both are set in other countries.
My one request of the author (or of the American publishers) would be to explain when this story is set. Because it depicts a tradional, rural village, the American reader doesn't know if this is contemporary or not; it looks like it could be "long ago and far away" until the very end when we learn that news crews came with cameras to interview Sosu. While children in Ghana know that even today many people live in villages that look like Sosu's, children here may look at the illustrations and assume this story took place a long time ago. I think it would make a powerful impact on contemporary American children to know that some children live in villages like this right now.
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