Sarah's Reviews > When a Crocodile Eats the Sun: A Memoir of Africa

When a Crocodile Eats the Sun by Peter Godwin
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's review
Aug 27, 2009

it was amazing

I thought this book would be an interesting account of growing up white in Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe). In fact, the author did that in another book. Here, after establishing a successful career as a journalist, Peter Godwin returns to Zimbabwe periodically from his home in NYC, in large part to care for his aging parents. I found this story riveting, in part because it is so current--the chaos and atrocities in Zimbabwe are ongoing--and because his struggles to deal with the increasing needs of his elderly parents are so familiar. There is Godwin, trying to ensure he has enough gas in the car to get his mother to the hospital for hip surgery on the first day of the revolution. Trying to get the drugs his father needs when pharmacies throughout the country are practically bare. The story is disturbing because there's no "happy ending" yet for Zimbabwe, not with Mugabe still in power. This is a compelling book on a number of levels--the political situation, the power of one's homeland, a revelation about family history and identity, the dilemma of caring for parents who are thousands of miles away. Highly recommended.

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