Bantaba in Cyberspace
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Momodou Posted - 24 Sep 2020 : 12:52:06
(Available at Timbooktoo Bookshop @ D300)

From the author of Defying Dictatorship comes this suspense-filled and truly captivating piece that has the intensity of keeping the reader stuck to the account until the end. Like Camara Layeís The African Child, Jallow takes the reader on an unusual voyage into his childhood, highlighting the odds he had to overcome to become who he is today. Musing on his past, the author could not help but laugh at his own childhood innocence, naivety and sometimes mischief. Childhood Days in Chaku Bantang does not only echo the proverbial rough road to progress but also has the ethicalness of offering a guide for the more youthful age to both acknowledge and gain from.

In spite of the fact that the episodes are told with such vividness and exactitude with which one wonders if the author had not just returned from an excursion into the past, the narratives are laced with so much humour as to consistently keep a smile on your face as you flip through the pages of this perfect work of art.

Pierre Gomez, PhD, HDR, Professor of Comparative Literature and Ag. Vice Chancellor (Academic), University of The Gambia

What Kouroussa was to Camara Laye in The African Child, Chaku Bantang is to Baba Galleh Jallow in Childhood Days in Chaku Bantang. The narrative is sprinkled with scenic environments, childhood friends, interesting people, folk tales, a stern father and naughty escapades. Culminating in the authorís struggles to stay in school against his fatherís wishes, this is the story of a childhood that made a great man of letters and ideas. This is the top Gambian bildungsroman so far.

Hassoum Ceesay, Historian, Author, the Gambia National Museum, Banjul

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