ZARGA'S SHADOW: An African Adventure by Carolyn London

ZARGA'S SHADOW: An African Adventure

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Zarga is an eleven year old African boy from an unnamed tribe, and his sworn enemy, the murderer of his father, turns out to be none other than Mbo, the man who holds the position of Ogba or voice of the tribal spirit god Ognobo. Although Zarga has been brought up according to his people's traditions and is being trained to take over his father's position of Chief Elder, he easily talks his plump, incompetent, but adoring friend into joining him in breaking tribal taboos (spying on the secret meetings open only to the men), questions traditional beliefs and even disrupts one of the conclaves of his elders to set them straight on Mbo's treachery toward the tribe. Then a white missionary appears on the scene, and although he can barely speak the native language, Zarga finds ""the Jesus path"" more reasonable than his own questioned faith. The missionary receives greater acceptance when his pills stop a sudden, deadly epidemic, but the doubting, scheming Mbo dies, freeing the tribesmen from his desire for power and rescuing Zarga from his inability to forgive this enemy. Just as unconvincing in description as in fiction, this is the sort of story that can only increase the information gap about Africa for this age group.

Pub Date: June 1st, 1966
Publisher: Duell, Sloan & Pearce