I have been reading a lot about Ethiopia lately. I'm doing it because I want to learn more, but I've also noticed that the kids seem to love seeing me do it. When I talk about what I've read, A always pays close attention. And D appears to not be listening, but later he may insert Menelik or Haile Selassie into a Jedi vs. Sith light saber battle. I think it's important that the kids see that Ethiopia is valuable not just to them, but to all of our family.
Here are some of the books I have enjoyed the most:
The Battle of Adwa (Raymond Jonas) - I love history books that read like novels. Menelik II in his campaign against the Italians comes across as a genius.
The Sign and the Seal (Graham Hancock) - Part history, part "Raiders of the Lost Ark," part "Da Vinci Code." You need to take it with a large grain of salt, but you will learn a lot about Ethiopian history.
Beneath the Lion's Gaze (Maaza Mengiste) - Very good novel about the fall of Halie Selassie, the Derg, and the Red Terror.
Three Famines (Thomas Keneally) - About Ethiopia, Ireland, and Bengal. Whatever your problems are, at least your government is not purposely trying to starve you to death.
Changing Identifications and Alliances in North-East Africa: Ethiopia and Kenya (Gunther Schlee and Elizabeth E. Watson) - Catchy title, huh? I bought this book because up to this point, the history that I was reading was the history of northern Ethiopia. When Menelik came to power, Addis Ababa was at the southern end of Ethiopia. The land that is currently southern Ethiopia, including Burjii, was not part of Ethiopia at all. This book is ethnography, not history, but it has two whole chapters on the Burjii. I'm trying to pull together what little information on Burjii history I can find, and I'll write more about it later.
What books about Ethiopia, especially about the south, would you add to this list?