Kamiri, a dirt-poor migrant raised in tribal culture, is drawn to the city, where he joins his brother in the illegal drugs trade. Disillusioned, Kamiri enters professional football, but his jealous brother shoots Kamiri in the knee, forcing him to begin work as a forest ranger.
Hassan, of doubtful parentage, is the youngest child in a rich and powerful Muslim family. Lonely and insecure at university, he joins Dorothy at a political protest that goes wrong, and finds himself in a terrorist organization. Appalled by their activities, he escapes and enters the Army’s officer candidate school.
Dorothy, a college graduate from a middle-class Christian family, is an idealist who is unsure whether to enter politics or medicine. Set back in both careers, she makes a decision, and faces a further romantic choice between Kamiri or Hassan.
These three East African young people are intertwined in friendship, as each seeks a fully satisfying and challenging life and career identity.
Two voices are heard throughout. One, seemingly the voice of God, and the Other, possibly Satan’s voice, offer conflicting guidance on Achieving Superpersonhood.
“Appealing characters and an intriguing portrait of modern Africa.” – Susan Waggoner, Foreword Reviews
“Its multiple characters rising and falling in a chaotic society, the tale has notes of Dickens while finding an energy all its own.” Kirkus Reviews
About the Author: William Peace grew up in suburban Philadelphia and now resides in London. A retired business executive who has traveled extensively, he provides pro bono consulting to London charities. This is his eighth novel.
Three young, black East Africans, Kamiri, Dorothy and Hassan, of dissimilar backgrounds struggle with hard times and become friends in their intersecting searches for a demanding yet satisfying personal identity – what Nietzsche called ‘super personhood’.
Kamiri, a dirt-poor, but likeable and intelligent migrant, who was raised in the tribal faith, is drawn to the city where he joins his brother in the drugs trade. Disgusted, he finds work in an abattoir, but his comradeship with Hassan leads him into professional football, where he becomes a star. Kamiri’s jealous brother, Warari, turned terrorist, shoots him in the knee, ending his athletic career, and he returns to the solace of the wilderness as a park ranger. Accidently, he kills an ivory poacher and faces prosecution until Hassan’s older, half-brother, Elijah, hires him to work as the lead ranger in an up-market safari park. He struggles with the demands of management, and when the park general manager is killed in a terrorist attack, Elijah piles on the pressure. The resilient Kamiri, a tourist favourite, rises to Elijah’s challenge to become the park’s general manager.
Dorothy, a university student from a professional, middle class, Christian family is an impatient idealist who is unsure whether her future lies on politics or medicine. Working part time in her father’s placement charity for migrants, she meets Kamiri, is attracted to him, introduces him to Christianity and to Hassan, an older student. As an intern in an MP’s office, she becomes involved in a sting on the corrupt exploitation of a diamond mine. Realising that the low ethical standards of politics are an obstacle for her, she opts for medicine, only to be raped by a senior doctor. Her faith in medicine is also shaken, but she mounts a civil suit and media campaign in successful retaliation for her humiliation. She turns down a proposal of marriage from Hassan, and accepts a GP posting near the safari park. She proposes marriage to Kamiri who accepts in amazement.
Hassan, of doubtful parentage, is the youngest child in a rich and powerful Muslim family. Lonely, insecure and drifting at university, he joins Dorothy in a political protest which goes wrong for him: he receives a two-year suspended jail sentence. While helping Dorothy in the mining sting, he trespasses on a claim, and fearful of being sent to prison, he immerses himself in suspect Islamic studies and is misled into a terrorist organisation. Appalled by the terrorist’s values and deeds, he escapes to Kamiri who provides him with a safe haven while he considers his options. Hassan’s father is able to place him in the Army’s officer candidate school. Twice, he is engaged in fire-fights with Warari’s terrorists, and advances successfully in the army. Having been turned down in his marriage proposal to Dorothy, he marries her younger sister, Mary, a dynamo psychologist.
Dorothy and Mary’s parents host a Sunday lunch for the two couples during which their individual challenges and prides of accomplishment are discussed.
Two voices are heard throughout: the One, likely the voice of God, and the Other, probably Satan’s voice, as they offer conflicting guidance on achieving alternative identities.
The setting is today’s in the startling diversity: cultural, economic, social and political that is East Africa.