November 19, 2019

#BookReview: Black Volta by Pete K.J.

Synopsis: "Lingers in the mind long after the reading." -D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review 

A murderer returns to Africa, seeking atonement for killing an innocent. 

Now that Carlos has emptied out his life, his past torments him. He can't go forward until he goes back—to Ghana—to own up to crimes he committed as a young man. 

A woman escapes poverty in Africa, but is trapped in a life supporting those she left behind. 

Liz left Ghana and is now a successful career woman in the USA. Freed from the daily oppression of scarcity, she remains under the vice-grip power of her hoarding mother and needy siblings. 

Their lives cross… 

and each are drawn back to the Black Volta River, to relive harrowing events that transformed them. 

The River knows their secrets, but can it transform their lives again? 

Deeply embroidered, utterly believable, the rich tapestry of Ghana—and its startling evolution over three decades—serve as the backdrop for this powerful story about race, love, patriarchy, and personal identity. 


Rating: ★★★★
My Review: This story was one that I would have never chosen to read.  I am so glad that this one came my way as once I started I couldn't out it down.  I am very surprised that this hasn't been picked up to be a movie or tv show.  It was a wonderful story of culture, travel, determination and strength. The journey that these two characters take is amazing and felt like real life.  The writing to this one helped to draw me into the story and kept me there until the very last page.  This is the reason why people should try more indie authors because every once in a while you find a gem like this story.  

"Black Volta is an intense and interesting work of literary fiction. As the title suggests, much of the novel centers around the Black Volta River in Ghana, Africa, with events spread across three decades as lives from the past come back together in the present. One such figure is Carlos, who seeks deep atonement for the sins of his past, and returns to Ghana to own up to the crimes of his youth. Liz has long since left Ghana for more opportunities in the USA, but she has to support the family she has left behind, and slowly she too is drawn back to the river where her own secrets and traumas lie. Author Pete KJ writes with highly atmospheric prose that evokes every sense when he writes of Ghana. The culture, climate and harrowing oppression of poverty are powerfully evoked in a truly literary way, and the characters are used to convey the bleak history of such a unique and beautiful place in the world. As the river flows through the novel to give it its rich flavor, the characters slowly come to life and we learn more about their grievous pasts. Themes of race and identity are the most prevalent, with effective close narration that gives us much from the characters' internal psyches and produces a highly emotive arc for them both as a result. Overall, Black Volta is a highly accomplished cultural novel with plenty of intrigue and strong character plot arcs to keep readers thrilled from beginning to end." (K.C. Finn, Readers' Favorite)

"A warm, vibrant story steeped in African culture and society--one which lingers in the mind long after the reading. Readers interested in literary psychological explorations of African cultural roots will find Black Volta as compelling for its social inspections and atmospheric descriptions of the country as it is an absorbing story of two very different individuals who dare to go backwards in time; there to rediscover their roots and wings." (D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review)

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