The Camel Bookmobile Kindle ã The Camel PDF/EPUB ²

The Camel Bookmobile [Reading] ➸ The Camel Bookmobile ➮ Masha Hamilton – Fiona Sweeney wants to do something that matters and she chooses to make her mark in the arid bush of northeastern Kenya By helping to start a traveling library she hopes to bring the words of Homer H Fiona Sweeney wants to do something that matters and she chooses to make her mark in the arid bush of The Camel PDF/EPUB ² northeastern Kenya By helping to start a traveling library she hopes to bring the words of Homer Hemingway and Dr Seuss to far flung tiny communities where people live daily with drought hunger and disease Her intentions are honorable and her rules are firm due to the limited number of donated books if any one of them is not returned the bookmobile will not returnBut encumbered by her Western values Fi does not understand the people she seeks to help And in the impoverished small community of Mididima she finds herself caught in the middle of a volatile local struggle when the bookmobile's presence sparks a dangerous feud between the proponents of modernization and those who fear the loss of traditional ways.

10 thoughts on “The Camel Bookmobile

  1. Tommie Tommie says:

    A downside of living abroad in a country with a different language is that the selection of books in English is always minimal Searching through the raggedy shelves at hostels or tourist oriented cafes becomes a treasure hunt Finding a copy 1984? Elation Finding out that it is in German? Back to the shelves All of which is to say I didn´t pick up this book on purpose But I finished it because a lack of other optionsIf you want a book where you can lose track of how often ´African´ is used as an adjective this is the book for you An entirely heavy handed account of a naïve do gooder in Kenya and the unintentional conseuencesresponses to her portable library I admire Ms Hamilton´s desire to show the complex side of development but to literally have a board meeting where the corporate sponsors declare they only wanted good press and don´t actually care? This total lack of subtlety runs through the entire book taking what could have been an interesting premise into a rather dull and flat story

  2. Natasha Natasha says:

    Have you ever gotten so angry after reading a book that you wanted to 1 throw it out of a moving car 2 tear all the pages into itsy bitsy pieces or 3 make a effigy of the author with the pages of the book and burn it Okay the Camel Bookmobile was not terrible The writing wasn't bad The characters weren't off putting The story wasn't unpleasant And yet it made me so angry That's because it could have been so much I picked up this book at a second hand bookstore while on holiday and it held so much of promise A book about a American librarian travelling to remotest Africa to bring literature to nomadic tribes It seems magic It could have taken us on a journey of what it is like to read a book for the first time It could have been about the experience of children learning to read or even understanding what books are It could gone deeper and explored the idea of what rural communities can teach the 'western' world ie the importance of traditional knowledge systems It could have asked the uestion of whether books and written stories have resulted in the loss of powerful memories that would have existed had we favoured oral story telling instead This book fell flat on all accounts The characters were half baked and never reached their full potential a lazy author perhaps? The story started to revolved around a contrived romance between the American and the African and all the depth went flying out the window The most interesting characters were tangential and ended up only sneaking their heads into the story to make way for said contrived romance The ending felt as though someone told the author that she needs to end with a bang so she decided that a 'bang' meant flatten out all the life from the story Flat That's the one word I would use to describe this book Disappointing unfulfilling contrived and amateurish are a few other words Also can someone please tell me what was the deal with all the mosuito references? These were scattered throughout the book at the beginning of every chapter but it didn't tie in to the story even if I stretched my metaphorical and figurative muscles to their max FYI I'm from Africa and mosuitoes are not the defining characteristic of this continent

  3. Book Concierge Book Concierge says:

    Fiona Sweeney is a librarian who accepts a job with a charitable foundation to bring books to remote villages in Africa promoting literacy among the tiny far flung communities of northeastern Kenya These settlements are impoverished lacking roads or schools and the people’s lives are steeped in tradition and superstition Because the donated books are limited in number and the settlements are many the library has initiated a tough fine if anyone fails to return a book the bookmobile will stop comingTalk about a clash of cultures What use is reading Tom Sawyer or a how to book on raising children to these people? They don’t understand the references can’t imagine why someone would paint a fence and have no place to buy ANY formula let alone a variety of formulas These are the arguments that the local African officials make trying to dissuade Fiona from persisting in taking the caravan of camels to the villages And yet the reality is that there are stories that inspire and piue interest Some of the residents see good in learning to read and dream of going to the city to further their education Of course others are certain that the drought is a punishment for their reaching beyond their borders or allowing the bookmobile to come to them in the first place That clash of cultures was what was most interesting to me in the book But Hamilton also includes a couple of relationships that become somewhat entangled in the story This took the book in a direction I wasn’t expecting and found somewhat dissatisfying

  4. Jen Jen says:

    Fiona Sweeney is an American librarian with a desire to do something with her life something that matters Her family has always been rooted in the same New York neighborhood but Fi isn't content to stay rooted Instead she decides to take a job in Kenya helping to start a traveling library The library takes books by camel to different tribes of people throughout the bush of northeastern Kenya The people of Mididima have differing feelings about the traveling books Matani was sent away by his father to be educated in Nairobi and he returned to teach the children of Mididima However most of the people of Mididima do not share his values or appreciation for books and learning They believe that by learning to read the stories are lost because people do not make an effort to keep them in their brains to retell them orally The elders know that the paper can be destroyed but if the story is in one's brain it cannot go away it cannot be lostMany of the people of Mididima want the library to stop coming altogether And when Taban aka Scar Boy does not return his library books an action that is strictly forbidden chaos erupts in the communityI fell in love with The Camel Bookmobile on page one paragraph oneOne of the strengths of this novel is Hamilton's efforts to take the reader inside the minds of the characters all of the characters The point of view changes by chapter alternating between Fi various people of Mididima and the Kenyan librarian The reader is able to experience the plot from different age perspectives different cultural perspectives different gender perspectives The mesh of these perspectives illustrates the mammoth complexity of cultural change Fi travels to Kenya with the best of intentions but what Fi doesn't realize is that she is seeing everything through the eyes of Western culture And likewise the people of Mididima who are dead set against literacy see things through the eyes of their own culture And when Nature begins to tell them that their way of life cannot be sustained much longer their response is not to learn a new way of living but rather to move to another geographic location that will support their present way of life The novel is almost a tennis match volleying back and forth between the two cultures But then there are times when the cultures mesh and the similarities between fellow members of the human race emergeThe themes of this novel are powerful and they raise uestions that don't have right or wrong answers Themes of this magnitude demand three dimensional characters with strengths and flaws; characters who are forever and realistically altered by the events they experience Hamilton doesn't disappoint on this front The silent and most powerful character is Nature Hamilton manages to brilliantly blend the setting into character in this novel The beautiful Kenyan bush is also a remorseless killer and it plays as much a role in the community as any of the human characters doI can't imagine reading this book and not being aware of how we view cultures that differ from our own The Camel Bookmobile is a stunning multi layered multi perspective novel about tolerance about humanity about change I highly recommend it

  5. Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance says:

    Certain books are allowed to be less than perfect For example any book about librarians or book collecting or even writing is such a welcome publishing event that I give it some slack; just the mere fact that someone decided to choose these as subjects is enough to allow the author some latitude The Camel Bookmobile conseuently I have let the belt out a couple of notches The writing is acceptable The characters shimmy up against stereotype here and there The author lets the genuine details appear now and then and the book shines I worried through the first few chapters concerned the author was trying to make a point change the world but she got bigger as the novel moved along and showed both the dark and the light The chief librarian seemed thin throughout; surely time in England would have developed his character a bit ? I ended up deciding to like the book despite its small flaws It is after all the story of the power of words on lives

  6. Jen Jen says:

    Big disappointment Interesting premise but so poorly written She includes some neat proverbs here and there but the book as a whole has a cardboardy feel the sort of formulaic writing of a cheap romance At times they even start speaking in thees and thous not a way I've ever had the urge to translate Kiswahili or any other language

  7. Judy Judy says:

    This book was stirred in my memory today I’m sure it’s been over five years since I read it and I remember enjoying it Now after reading some of the reviews here on GRs I’m thinking maybe I ought to read it again Not many people care for it So you are on your own as to whether it’s worthwhile for you to read it The author has written several other books—maybe I’ll take a look at one of those

  8. Tracey Tracey says:

    Sadly this was as good as I thought it would be The plot was slow the characters didn't really make me care for what happened to them

  9. Kendra Kendra says:

    Not an awful book but definitely not one to keep or recommend The main story was just ok and I wanted to know how it turned out but I did not enjoy the individual stories and I didn't care for the characters None of the characters were well developed I always felt as if they were a bit unfocused and there wasn't enough for me to grab on to The book follows an American Fi to Africa as she volunteers to guide a new library program that sends books out to the villages on the African plains The books and people travel to the villages via camel therefore its the Camel Bookmobile We meet many of the residents of one village and bounce back and forth between them with every chapter I don't even recommend this one as a light in between book I was left with uestions than answers and it definitely didn't leave me satisfied SPOILERSSPOILERSSPOILERSSPOILERS I thought the ending sucked Royally We were left with wide open stories with no ending I get that everything can't be a happy ending but this one was very disappointing What happened to Taban? What happened to Kanika wanting to leave the village Are we supposed to believe that just because she gets into a relationship we're presuming since that isn't even conclusive she would lose her dream to leave? Are we supposed to believe that Taban is left as he was and nothing changes for him? How sad And what happened to Fi? Did she return to America? Did she search for Matani at all? Would she search for him? What happened to Matani? Did he end his marriage or go back to Jwahir as if nothing had happened? sigh

  10. Theresa Theresa says:

    This was a very interesting story based on a real life experience A librarian wanting to do than work in a library and shush children applies for a job in Africa in order to deliver books by camel to villages that would otherwise not ever be able to have access to books However because the books are scarce if any books are lost or damaged the camel bookmobile will not return to that villageThe book deals with issues of whether bringing books to a people who still depend on the earth and believe that drought must be the fault of the tribe or someone in it rather than an effect of the weather will change that people for the better or destroy their lifestyle in an attempt to educate them Very interesting ideasThe ending was a little jarring though in the sense that the author had set everything up to go one way and then went in the total opposite direction and then just left it there when the book ended It did serve to illustrate her point that life goes on for these people in the way it always did and the books did not change anything although there was potential

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