Sacred River: Book by Syl Cheney-Coker

Sacred River

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ISBN: 9780821421376    Publisher: Ohio University Press Year of publishing: 2015     Format:  Paperback / softback No of Pages: 456 pp        
The reincarnation of a legendary nineteenth-century Caribbean emperor as a contemporary African leader is at the heart of this novel. "Sacred River" deals with the extraordinary lives, hopes, powerful...Read more
The reincarnation of a legendary nineteenth-century Caribbean emperor as a contemporary African leader is at the heart of this novel. "Sacred River" deals with the extraordinary lives, hopes, powerful myths, stories, and tragedies of the people of a modern West African nation. It is also the compelling love story of an idealistic philosophy professor and an ex-courtesan of incomparable beauty. Two hundred years after his death, the great Haitian emperor Henri Christophe miraculously appears in a dream to Tankor Satani, president of the fictional West African country of Kissi, with instructions for Tankor to continue Henri Christophe's rule, which had been interrupted by "that damned Napoleon." Ambitious in scope, "Sacred River" is a diaspora-inspired novel, in which Cheney-Coker has tackled the major themes of politics, social strife, crime and punishment, and human frailty and redemption in Malagueta, the fictional, magical town and its surroundings first created by the author in "The Last Harmattan of Alusine Dunbar," for which he was awarded the coveted Commonwealth Writers' Prize. "Sacred River" is equally about love and politics, and marks the return to fiction of one of Africa's major writers.
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Review:
For more than two score years we have waited for a rightful descendent of Syl Cheney-Coker s magical and prize-winning novel "The Last Harmattan of Alusine Dunbar" to come into our hands, and now...Read more
For more than two score years we have waited for a rightful descendent of Syl Cheney-Coker s magical and prize-winning novel "The Last Harmattan of Alusine Dunbar" to come into our hands, and now we have it. In "Sacred River," Cheney-Coker has surpassed himself, giving us a novel so large in scope and beautiful in its telling that we hate to have it end. It s a work that from its prologue to its final breath reminds us that myth, legend, and storytelling are what Africa old and new is made of. This book is a triumph. Richard Wiley, award-winning author and Director of Creative Writing, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
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