RaveHistorical Novel Society[Cher Ami] is a stuffed exhibit but takes her situation with so much philosophical grace and humor that I was immediately won over ... This could have been a sentimental tear-jerker. Who wouldn’t cry over a World War I story, featuring a sensitive, tortured officer and a brave, thoughtful messenger pigeon; that is, a dove. The pathos might have been awful. But not in Kathleen Rooney’s elegant and well-researched telling. From its first lines, hearing Cher Ami’s voice, I relaxed, knowing that even if (if?) the story turned out tragically, it was true in the way the best fiction is, with wit, intelligence, insights, and unexpected turns in the plot. Recommended.
MixedHistorical Novel SocietyAt its best, this novel demands to be savored at a slower, more old-fashioned tempo. Nganang’s voice is that of a familiar, confident storyteller. His intellectual narrator has endless, often amusing, asides to his listener ... This story of people living within the history and brutal tangles of colonization is more important now than ever, and this book will surely find its way onto reading lists for students of African cultures. However, for me, the author’s ironical style, so evocative of storytellers of centuries past, didn’t work. It removed me from the story rather than beguiling me into the light of a campfire to listen, which was, I think, his intent.