When a Crocodile Eats the Sun by Peter Godwin

Peter Godwin’s account of the social collapse of Zimbabwe under the dictatorship of Robert Mugabe is a personal one. When a Crocodile Eats the Sun is Godwin’s family history entwined with the decline of Zimbabwe’s society and how the white people who called that country their home suffered under Mugabe and his “wovits.”

This story is in no way a stagnant, cut and dried historical account of the country. Instead of feeling sorry for the indigenous people, I was surprised to discover that I empathised with Godwin’s family and others like them.

Beautifully written in memoir style, Peter Godwin paints a picture of Zimbabwe that is colorful in his youth but grey and dangerous as he travels back to visit his ailing parents who refuse to leave the place that they have called home for over fifty years.

Towards the end of this impeccably written book we learn the sad reason why Godwin’s parents embrace a violent adopted homeland over their own countries of birth.

I loved this book.


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