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Black Mulberries by Caitlin Davies

Black Mulberries (2009)

by Caitlin Davies

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Black Mulberries by Caitlin Davies is set in Botswana and tells the story of the Muyendi and Krause families. One black, one white, these two families become entwined through the years, first as neighbours then as business partners. Harbouring grudges and secrets, the story is told by four generations of women. The clever and crafty Nanthewa, the family matriarch, her beautiful daughter, Kazi, Petra, the daughter of a white hunter, born to Africa but never feeling welcomed in it, and Candy, the granddaughter of Nanthewa, who spends her time listening and sees more than anyone knows. The story spans decades from the late 1940’s and into the new century.

I enjoyed this book but it never quite reached the level that I had hoped for. Each of the four “speakers” had their own unique voice which kept the storylines separate and easy to identify. I certainly found the women characters were much more clearly defined than the men who all seem to some across somewhat ambiguous. The author herself lived in Botswana for twelve years and knows of what she writes which is apparent in her descriptions of the land and the culture of the people.

Although I found Black Mulberries a mostly enjoyable read I did have some issues with the author’s somewhat jerky writing style, but I was able to put up with the abrupt transitions in order to read this multi-generational story. Overall, this is a good book, but not a great book. ( )
1 vote DeltaQueen50 | Feb 22, 2013 |
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Set against the wild landscape of Botswana, 'Black Mulberries' is the tale of two feuding families whose destinies are intertwined.

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