The Camel Bookmobile by Masha Hamilton
On the library stacks: Adult fiction
AR Reading Level: 5.9
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
Fiona Sweeney is a thirty-something living in New York who wants to make a difference. She travels to Africa to deliver books to remote villages by...camel bookmobile, of course. There is a problem in her favorite village, Mididima, when a disfigured boy from the village refuses to return his library books. Under the bookmobile rules, the village can no longer receive books if they are not all returned.
The controversy in Mididima is much more deep rooted than just a couple of missing books. The villagers are facing a serious drought. Some of them fear the new values brought into the village, represented by the books. They believe that sticking to traditional values will keep them safe. Others live for the bookmobile's arrival, yearning for knowledge and the expansion of their worldview.
As a trained librarian, I had such high hopes for this book. I liked that the story was told from multiple characters' perspectives. But I also felt that the jumping around made it difficult to truly flesh out any one character. I found Fiona difficult to like, even though I was rooting for her success as a librarian the whole book. The ending might have been realistic, but it also made me kind of sad.
Check out the real story behind the book here.
Also reviewed by: So Many Books, So Little Time ~ Book Clutter
2 hours ago