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Nine Hills to Nambonkaha: Two Years in the…
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Nine Hills to Nambonkaha: Two Years in the Heart of an African Village

by Sarah Erdman

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    Three Cups of Tea: One Man's Mission to Promote Peace ... One School at a Time by Greg Mortenson (bookwoman247)
    bookwoman247: Both books are humanitarian in nature, and both offer glimpses of Non-Western cultures.
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This is a wonderful account of Erdman's two years as a Peace Corps volunteer in a small village in the Ivory Coast in the late 1990's.

Even though I'm a bit skeptical of such glowing accounts, especially when they make the author look good, I just could not help but cheer at the love and respect that seemed to go both ways between the author and the villagers.

I loved this book in spite of my skepticism. ( )
1 vote bookwoman247 | May 25, 2012 |
Erdman relates the stories of the two years she spent as a Peace Corps volunteer in a small village in the Ivory Coast in Africa in the late 1990’s. I had to look up the copyright date after I started the book; was the book taking place in the 1990’s or the 1890’s? It could have been either based on the lives of the villagers. No running water, no electricity. Mothers didn’t know the birthdates or even the ages of their children. Very little reading or writing. No knowledge of birth control or ways to combat disease. Little knowledge of the outside world. Where should Erdman, assigned to the little village as a health care worker, start? She begins to teach the mothers about their babies, how to help them gain weight, getting them immunized, and gradually begins to help them learn about ways to avoid getting AIDS and about birth control. In the end, she feels a deep sense of accomplishment in her work in the village.My new favorite travel story. ( )
  debnance | Jan 29, 2010 |
Well-written, vivid account of life in small village in Cote d'Ivoire.
  Whitcarr | Nov 8, 2009 |
I loved this book. A beautifully written account of peace corp experience. Sarah Erdman was able to share her heart, joy, frustrations and hope. She pulled me into the experience so well that I felt I was watching the weighing of babies. I read a lot of books like this and it has been a long time since I read one that touched me to my core. I was so touched that I sent a note to Ms. Erdman. I was overjoyed when she responded. She was able to return to Nambonkaha in 2007 for the opening of the Maternity clinic started while she was there. She also was reunited with her kids who were all taller than she. Sidibe finally passed his test and is now in a larger city working as an anesthesiologist. The best news of all was that her work is being continued in the village by a large group of health workers. ( )
  traczy555 | May 2, 2009 |
a 2-year (1998-2000) Peace Corps stint as a health care worker in rural Cote d"Ivorie, a West African country. It's a village nearly untouched by modern civilization, but In the few months before she leaves, the president is toppled by a coup and electricity comes to the village. Her relationship with the people is woven with ancient beliefs of sorcerers and traditons of social engagement that must be incorporated into her work in order to succeed in changing basic habits of reproductive rights, sanitation, and medical care. quite enjoyable read.
  Pia17Ella | Jan 25, 2009 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0312423128, Paperback)

The village of Nambonkaha in the Ivory Coast is a place where electricity hasn’t yet arrived, where sorcerers still conjure magic, where the tok-tok sound of women pounding corn fills the morning air like a drumbeat. As Sarah Erdman enters the social fold of the village as a Peace Corps volunteer, she finds that Nambonkaha is also a place where AIDS threatens and poverty is constant, where women suffer the indignities of patriarchal customs, and where children work like adults while still managing to dream. Lyrical and topical, Erdman’s beautiful debut captures the astonishing spirit of an unforgettable community.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:24:18 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

"When Sarah Erdman, a Peace Corps volunteer, arrived in Nambonkaha, she became the first Caucasian to venture there since the French colonialists. But even though she was thousands of miles away from the United States, completely on her own in this tiny village in the West African nation of Cote d'Ivoire, she did not feel like a stranger for long. As her narrative unfolds, Erdman draws us into the changing world of the village that became her home. Here is a place where electricity is expected but never arrives, where sorcerers still conjure magic, where the tok-tok sound of women grinding corn with pestles rings out in the mornings like church bells. Rare rains provoke bathing in the streets and the most coveted fashion trend is fabric with illustrations of Western cell phones. Yet Nambonkaha is also a place where AIDS threatens and poverty is constant, where women suffer the indignities of patriarchal customs, where children work like adults while still managing to dream"--Publisher's description.… (more)

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