5 Books to read before your African Safari

5 Books to read before your African Safari

Planning an African Safari?

Vishnu Rajamanickam | An unparalleled time awaits you in the land of the Big Five! In fact, so overwhelming is the African safari experience that those who’ve already been there have immortalized their accounts within the pages of books and journals.

Here’s a chance to connect yourself with the world’s most unadulterated lands and their beings even before you’ve greeted them.

You would do well with preparing for your stay in the East-African savannahs with one or more of the books listed below.

Out of Africa by Karen Blixen

Blixen’s Kenyan account of the life and times in the colonial era is perhaps the only book by a white author to earn a place amongst African Classics. Set in British East Africa, ‘Out Of Africa’ traces Blixen’s journey through the African hinterlands as she hopes to make a living out of a coffee plantation and a husband after moving to the then British East Africa. Like it does to everyone, Africa shatters her hopes of a good-life and goes on to build one for her own amidst the tumultuous times. It is this life that she looks back on even as she bids farewell to a land that gave her much more than her rigid expectations, making ‘Out of Africa’ one of the best described quotidian struggles in Africa by a foreigner.

Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Ngozi Adichie’s moving account of an African freedom struggle has moved mountains to tears. ‘Half of A Yellow Sun’ is a heartbreaking tale of three Bravehearts torn between the tough choices of a war-prone life during the Nigerian Civil War of 1967. A tribute to the common man’s struggles of a war, this poignant book will humble you and make you appreciate every limb that has sacrificed itself to make Nigeria what it is today.

Whatever You Do, Don’t Run: True Tales of a Botswana Safari Guide by Peter Allison

Not all literature based out of Africa has to bear a sombre tone.  This book holds stories that you would call a light-hearted banter during your Safari. For instance, it is hilarious to see that the writer who has spent a better part of a decade in the bush, call humans the most dangerous animals he has ever encountered. With his impeccable charm and his fluid storytelling, Allison gleefully sparks your interest and creates a reverence for the African wilderness through this book.

African Safari: Into the Great Game Reserves by Peter and Beverly Pickford

Divided across eight chapters, ‘African Safari’ is more of a picture book overlayed by brief descriptions of memorable encounters captured in time by two celebrated wildlife photographers. Nevertheless, if a true first-hand account of a brush with the wild is what you seek, this book does justice to it with its glossy black-and-white pictures and epic narratives to complement it.

Life Safari by John P. Strelecky Strelecky’s

‘Life Safari’ brings to life what every one of us must have thought of at least once in our lifetimes – quitting the mundane life to discover its greater purpose. In the company of a wise old woman Ma Ma Gombe, Jack embarks on a journey on foot across Africa to find his big five for life – life’s five big lessons – through the people and the places that they meet on the way. Tread on your own personal walking Safari with these two across a book that skillfully feeds your motivation in the guise of fiction.