The Stray Bulletin

Arts and culture in East Africa and beyond

Terrible things can happen November 27, 2009

Filed under: Book reviews — Sophie Alal @ 11:04 am
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Review by Sophie Alal of the novel The Year Of Numbers

Published in The East African on June 8th, 2009.

There are some things that the Lonely Planet guide to Egypt does not prepare the traveller for, such as Cairo’s underbelly of refugees and illegal immigrants. The Year of Numbers follows Genevieve, a young Canadian documenting the stories of Dafurian refugees, as she struggles with her love for Alpha, a Sierra Leonean Muslim of mixed descent.

Writers of contemporary African fiction have drawn from the deep pool of Africa’s unending humanitarian crises even though there are not enough words to catalogue human suffering. This book which was written by Paulina Wyrzykowski, a human rights and refugee lawyer based in Kampala, is a tribute to the African refugees she worked with in Cairo. (more…)