Biographies / Autobiorgaphies · Nigerian / African literature

Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela

“For with freedom comes responsibilities, and I dare not linger, for my long walk is not yet ended,” 

I held off for the longest time in reading this book. Reading such a doughy book is a serious commitment and is not something to be taken lightly. Mandela’s status as a political-historical figure has been avidly discussed. This book also deals not only with Mandela’s early life but also his experiences of apartheid, prison and persecution.

Opinions have always been divided about Mandela, and I myself knew only little of him. This book certainly helped me to find out more about what he achieved during his life and it also demonstrates the enduring power of courage.

This memoir was apparently begun during his incarceration on Robben Island and spans over 700 pages. As I said, it does seem like quite a doughy book and not the sort of book to read if you find yourself to be a newbie to the history of South Africa or of apartheid. If you do find yourself wanting to read this book, then read up about the historical context first then it might make sense.

I was glad to finish this book. It took its own sweet time to reveal what it was capable of and when that happened it was a brilliant memoir. However, I don’t think I could ever really read this book again because its not really the sort of thing a person needs to return to repeatedly.

MY RATING: *** / *****

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