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Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Compelling African Novel Harnesses the Power of Childhood Memories

“Let no one be fooled by the fact that we may write in English, for we intend to do unheard of things with it.” — Award-winning, Nigerian author, Chinua Achebe

Adventures of Bamo by Keleti Sanon

Author Keleti Sanon and his bookcover

Nationwide — A single mother desperate to carve out a life for her son… a son orphaned at an early age. A legacy no one expected. Keleti Sanon’s debut novel is fertile ground for twist and turns. The author’s previous work, Another Chance Maybe the Last Chance, was a nonfiction title that included a call-to-action across the African diaspora. In his latest release, Sanon delivers fine storytelling ripe with the message of faith, hope, and reconciliation.

In The Adventures of Bamo, author Sanon introduces readers to fictional characters, Diaka and Bamo Toure. The mother and son’s stories begin in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, and takes readers on an immersive journey through small village life in Oume, Africa to urban life in the United States. Sanon says, “The project was inspired by my life and the life of my mother. In many ways, the book is a blend of stories from my childhood. I combine real and imagined characters.” Sanon goes on to say, “Storytelling is a mainstay of the Mandingo tradition and an integral part of the community. I grew up hearing stories, and they birthed a desire to share my voice, culture, and heritage with the world.”

Sanon does so beautifully in The Adventures of Bamo as he strikes the perfect balance between escapism and substance in Diaka and Bamo’s successive but often parallel stories. The heart and hopes of Diaka Toure were shattered when a romance ended in a cruel dismissal. Alone and pregnant, Diaka is disowned by her father. In an effort to save herself and her son from crippling depression she travels from the metropolitan city of Abidjan to the rural village of Oume where the university education woman she finds her calling as a teacher. Diaka builds a culture of learning in the small village, but then tragedy strikes and her dreams for the future are swept away.

Bamo lost his mother at an early age and spent much of his childhood moving from home to home in the village, living with many mothers, proving the African adage, “It takes a village to raise a child.” An opportunity to move to the United States to continue his education presents itself and Bamo takes it. An unlikely friendship, social media fame, and the realization of purpose brings Bamo back to Oume with a passion to help the village he misses so much.

Sanon believes The Adventures of Bamo exemplifies the power of faith and hope in overcoming personal pain, and the power of forgiveness to help us achieve more than we ever imagined. He hopes people who are struggling to achieve and become more would see themselves in Diaka and Bamo’s stories and embrace the common themes of fortitude and perseverance.

Through The Adventures of Bamo, Mother Africa comes alive, not just for African readers, but for readers from around the world who desire to know about his beautiful homeland, it’s people, and culture. Sanon encourages all to visit the continent.


About the Author
Keleti Sanon considers himself to be a man on a mission to connect Africa to the rest of the world. He is a best-selling author whose passion as a writer is in sharing the beauty, culture, and history of his homeland in Abidjan, Ivory Coast. In addition to his work as an author, Keleti holds two college degrees and has enjoyed a successful 20-year career as professional aircraft mechanic. He resides in Humble, Texas, USA.

For more details and/or to purchase the book, visit Amazon, Books2Read.com or


Debra Cumberbatch