In an era when only a few weekly flights served the royal capital and television had not yet come to Ethiopia, the memoir Flowers & Locusts chronicles the tumultuous childhood in Ethiopia of an American girl whose father served as adviser to the legendary Emperor Haile Selassie.

 

From the girl’s earliest memory as her family drives through embattled streets during an attempted revolution, to the poignant ending as she is torn from the people she has come to love, the author brings to vivid life momentous events in this ancient African land. At nights when hyenas roam her neighborhood and during enchanted days of adventures and misadventures with a beloved younger brother, the girl’s voice – in recounting her father’s kidnapping, a gala party at the Palace, or her touching relationship with a young girl in an orphanage – memorably captures the deep emotional texture of her experience.

 

Known to the ancient world as Abyssinia, Ethiopia is the stage on which are played out universal themes: the longing we all share for the lost innocence of youth, and the family relationships, struggles of childhood growth, and early loves that shape us.

 

While the Ethiopia of her childhood no longer exists, Flowers & Locusts offers a chance to enter into a bygone world whose mysteries linger in the author’s mind and that of its people.

 

“A riveting dispatch from a bygone era, as a young American girl comes to Ethiopia as a privileged foreigner and leaves with an Ethiopian heart.”

 

-Prince Asfa-Wossen Asserate, author of King of Kings:

Triumph and Tragedy of Emperor Haile Selassie

 

Available from Amazon