Stitch and Bear

A long-running Irish blog with reviews of the best restaurants in Dublin and throughout Ireland. Some wine and cocktails thrown in for good measure!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Baking Cakes in Kigali - Gaile Parkin

It's always nice when you read a simple book which has heart and a feel-good factor. The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency was a book in such a vein and now we have Baking Cakes in Kigali to enjoy. It's the first novel from Zambian author Gaile Parkin who currently works as a consultant in the areas of HIV, gender issues and education. Her extensive experience forms the basis for many of the tales in this remarkable debut.

Our main character is Angel Tungazara, a cake-baker of exceptional skill and talent. People flock from near and far to order her cakes for their events and in doing so reveal themselves and their troubles to Angel over a sweet cup of spicy tea. Set in Rwanda, which is slowly rebuilding itself following the horrific genocide, Parkin weaves a tale of hope and renewal. As well as facing the atrocities of man, the author also tackles issues of infidelity, gender inequality and the ever-increasing presence of HIV.

Angel is an amazing character, clever and intelligent, and you quickly come to care for her and her clients. Baking Cakes is an easy book to read, but yet it faces challenging topics with a gentle humour.

1 comment

caite said...

this one is at the top of my TBR pile and it is great to know that it sounds like a winner.

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