Reading Uganda: Tropical Fish, Tales from Entebbe

The book I chose for Uganda was Tropical Fish, Tales from Entebbe by Doreen Baingana.

Such a good book! Well-written, great characters, a super solid sense of place; it’s everything you hope to find in a work of fiction, but so often don’t. I really enjoyed it, and highly recommend it.

The story is told through the viewpoints of three sisters. Their experiences of the world are all very different, but one common thread is that they are growing up during a time of conflict, doing the best they can to bring some normalcy to chaos. The setting is during Adi Amin’s rule, but the crazy-making by the people “in charge” could apply to anywhere, anytime.

Like now, for instance.

“The change was gradual and the result normal, like many other thing’s about Amin’s time, including the every day fear in the air. She remembered how everyone had laughed in astonishment then got used to it…
Everyone adjusted to the upside-down week, the upside down life, including other unbelievable and ugly things she didn’t want to think about. The bad smell had become familiar.”

Mount Khadam, Uganda
Mount Khadam, Uganda
(Image by Eright via Wikimedia Commons

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