I am always looking for a good read. So now that a new batch of fellows are trying to wrap their minds around their upcoming Ghana experience, I thought I’d take the opportunity to recommend some reading material I find interesting or relevant to my time here in Tamale. Past fellows, please keep this discussion going with any books you loved and would recommend!
#1 most important book for traveling in Ghana
Ghana: The Brandt Travel Guide. Go for the most recent addition you can get your hands on – recommendations about where to sleep/visit/eat have been so essential to traveling here. CWS Field Staffer Wahab borrowed my copy from the office, and while he says some of the information is a little off, he is reading it cover to cover so it can’t be that bad!
Some background info on the global water crisis:
WHO/UNICEF’s Progress on sanitation and drinking water: 2010 update. Disclaimer: This publication is 60 pages BUT has some good visuals. There’s some great info here but if you read it cover to cover you will resurface speaking NGO-ish and referring to everything you love by acronyms.
UN Water’s Gender, water and sanitation: a policy brief. A more concise summary of the relationship between women and water in the developing world.
The CLASSIC Things Fall Apart. It’s become the pillar of West African literature, so…
Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. Ok, so this is about Nigeria’s Biafran war of the late 60s, (not Ghana – historically very stable and peaceful!) but I just love her colorful and nuanced descriptions of foreigners in West Africa, gender roles, familial relationships, urban vs rural spaces … well I just love it in general.
This book was so fascinating it inspired me to work on a book of my own. Although my book is still a work in progress I would love to have my writing published one day. I have a lot to say about my time in Africa and the people I have met along the way and I think writing a book would be the best way to document everything that I have learned.
Nowadays, you can even publish a book independently so getting your writing out there has never been easier. A lot of people have asked me ‘is self publishing a book a good idea?’ but I think that as long as you do plenty of research, you can easily make the best decision for your needs. What do you think? Have you always wanted to write a book?
Ok enough of my thoughts! Past fellows – what books or articles helped shape the way you thought about your CWS experience? Extra points if they are fun to read!