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Group Read Archive 2014-16 > World Lit Group Read (Sub Sahara - Mar 2016) - The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind by William Kamkwamba

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message 1: by Holly, That Geeky One (new)

Holly (hollycoulson) | 1949 comments Mod
This month we're reading The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind by William Kamkwamba for our Sub-Saharan focus!

If anyone would like the lead the discussion and pose questions/discussion topics, that would be great!


message 2: by Marina (new)

Marina (sonnenbarke) Oh, that's great, I'm so glad the book I nominated won! Unfortunately I don't think I'll have time to lead the discussion, though... (Also, I would like to see how it's done before I propose myself as a Group Read lead).


message 3: by Cindy (new)

Cindy (bkind2books) | 847 comments Just got it from the library - I think this looks good.


message 4: by megan (new)

megan | 914 comments Found this on Scribd.


message 5: by megan (last edited Mar 04, 2016 11:21AM) (new)

megan | 914 comments So we are reading the 32 page book: The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind by William Kamkwamba and not the actual scientific biography: The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind Creating Currents of Electricity and Hope by William Kamkwamba ???


message 6: by Cindy (new)

Cindy (bkind2books) | 847 comments I'm reading The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Creating Currents of Electricity and Hope - is the other one a children's book?


message 7: by megan (new)

megan | 914 comments Yeah


message 8: by Marina (new)

Marina (sonnenbarke) I actually have the longer one... I didn't even know there was a children's version... ???


message 9: by Renee, Mistress of the Mini-Challenge (new)

Renee M | 4727 comments Mod
It's great to see how much interest there is in this title! (I'm going to have to look into it now that you've all got me so curious.)

Is anyone who has committed to reading willing to lead the discussion? You don't need to do much... Just monitor the thread and maybe throw in a question once in a while.


message 10: by Renee, Mistress of the Mini-Challenge (new)

Renee M | 4727 comments Mod
Also, I think you can decide amongst yourselves which version to read. Unfortunately, I can't edit the opening post to show both.

You might even decide to go with both and have people read whichever they have time for. We did that with A Brief History of Time awhile back because there were so many versions.


message 11: by Marina (new)

Marina (sonnenbarke) I started reading this yesterday night. I've only read the first chapter but I already find it very interesting, and the writing is good, too. The author is describing his childhood in the village so far, and it's really nice to read about the magic beliefs and so on. I especially liked it when he says that every children in the world has more or less the same way of entertaining themselves, so we are not so different from each other in the end. That is a very interesting point. What do you all think about this?


message 12: by Cindy (new)

Cindy (bkind2books) | 847 comments Loved this inspiring story.

Marina, I think that most kids do entertain themselves more or less the same. There are some games and toys that seem universal. Yes, there are technological improvements, but a ball is a ball and a bat is just a better stick.


message 13: by Marina (new)

Marina (sonnenbarke) I totally agree with you, Cindy. So this proves the author's point, we are all similar in the end.

I'm enjoying this book immensely, but it is a very tough read, and I have decided to alternate it with a fiction book because sometimes it was getting really hard to stomach. The description of the famine brought tears to my eyes, it seems incredible that things like this can still happen in this millennium. I'm incredibly angry at the short-sighted (to say the least) politics of the Western countries and the government of Malawi alike, which had as a result this horrible famine.

However, I have to say I found it very inspiring how the author managed to find solace in books as soon as the famine is over.

This is an absolutely great read, if it continues in this way it's going to be my first 5 stars of the year. Will have to see how it goes on, though.


message 14: by Marina (new)

Marina (sonnenbarke) I've just finished reading this and I have to tell you all I absolutely loved this book. This is the best of the year so far. Absolutely 5 stars from my part, and I wish you all read it, it's so beautiful and touching. A true history of hope, even in the direst of situations.


message 15: by Cindy (new)

Cindy (bkind2books) | 847 comments I really liked it too.

It was interesting to see how Malawi's educational system worked. Makes you grateful for our public schools. William was desperate to continue his education and so many here take it for granted.

Do you think he would have accomplished as much if Malawi had a public education system?


message 16: by Renee, Mistress of the Mini-Challenge (new)

Renee M | 4727 comments Mod
I just got my hands on an audiobook for this (the adult version) so I'm in for this one. Also, you guys make it seem like something I shouldn't miss.


message 17: by megan (new)

megan | 914 comments You shouldn't! The science stuff is explained very well.


message 18: by Renee, Mistress of the Mini-Challenge (new)

Renee M | 4727 comments Mod
Thanks, Meg! I'm looking forward to it.


message 19: by Plethora (new)

Plethora (bookworm_r) | 26 comments The long version came up today on sale $1.99 on kindle, not sure how long it will stay on sale.


message 20: by Plethora (new)

Plethora (bookworm_r) | 26 comments The long version came up today on sale $1.99 on kindle, not sure how long it will stay on sale.


message 21: by Renee, Mistress of the Mini-Challenge (new)

Renee M | 4727 comments Mod
Thanks, Bookworm!


message 22: by megan (new)

megan | 914 comments I sent reading suggestions of this to several of my reading friends, who also happen to be engineers. From them I found out that my university's dean of the college of engineer was at William's TED talk!
Since then, my university has been sending senior design project teams to various area in Africa, Including Malawi, to learn/help build/improve efficiency and design of windmills and small scale hydroelectric generators.
So cool! Wish I had graduated a few years later.


message 23: by Marina (new)

Marina (sonnenbarke) Wow, that's really cool, Meg! I can understand how you wish you had graduated a bit later...


message 24: by Leila (new)

Leila | 3 comments Hi Marina, can you help me at all? The 'Home' tab along the top seems to have disappeared and I am having problems finding my list of current books that I'm reading to update the pages and add new ones. I seem to be making a real mess of this which is so frustrating.
I can't find anywhere that explains why this has happened?


message 25: by Marina (new)

Marina (sonnenbarke) Hi Leila, I think this might be due to the recent restyling of Goodreads, you might want to ask in the Feedback Group or look for an answer there.

However, this is your currently reading bookshelf: https://www.goodreads.com/review/list... You find it by simply going to the "My Books" tab and searching for that specifical shelf.


message 26: by Leila (new)

Leila | 3 comments Thank you so much Marita for replying so promptly. I have joined the Feedback Group as apparently you must do this to ask a question. The Frequently Asked Questions Thread is closed so I have left my queries in another thread in the hope it is the right one!

I have tried a few times going to the 'My Books' tab but up to now have not worked out how to do what used to be so straightforward when the home page was there. I'll try again though. Perhaps it is just me. I am not the most technical of people if that is the right word!

Good to hear from you anyway and hope all is well with you and yours. Take care x Leila


message 27: by Val (new)

Val (valugalde) Hey everyone! I just finished reading it and I loved it! Here's my review if you'd like to read it https://www.goodreads.com/review/show... x


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