Good Morning, Mr. Mandela
written by Zelda la Grange
published by Viking/Penguin Random House
Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Did I enjoy this book: It was a major disappointment.
I really wanted to like this book, but it was long, boring, and poorly written. Don’t take my word for it, read an excerpt from the book:
“Madiba [as La Grange calls Mr. Mandela] was always well groomed and took great care in making sure that his skin was well moisturized, and I remember how I sometimes had to struggle during his Presidency to get a particular lotion that was not available on the South African market at the time – simple Palmer’s Body Lotion that he used while he was imprisoned. I think the company may have stopped manufacturing it in South Africa for a while and we had to ask people in the United States to buy it in bulk and send it to us in South Africa. The same with the eye drops he preferred: Refresh Plus in the blue and white box.”
I bet you got bored and stopped reading before you got to the end of that quote. Now imagine 362 pages of that with a threat at the end that says, “To be continued . . . “
Would I recommend it: At a price of just under $30.00, absolutely not. If you’d like to honor Mr. Mandela and his accomplishments, consider visiting his foundation at http://www.nelsonmandela.org. You’re money would be better spent there.
About the book – from Goodreads: Zelda la Grange grew up in South Africa as a white Afrikaner who supported the rules of segregation. Yet just a few years after the end of Apartheid she would become a most trusted assistant to Nelson Mandela, growing to respect and cherish the man she had been taught was the enemy.
Good Morning, Mr Mandela tells the extraordinary story of how a young woman had her life, beliefs, prejudices and everything she once believed in utterly transformed by the greatest man of her time. It is the incredible journey of an awkward, terrified young typist in her twenties later chosen to become the President’s most loyal and devoted servants, spending most of her adult working life travelling with, supporting and caring for the man she would come to call ‘Khulu’, or ‘grandfather’.
Here Zelda pays tribute to Nelson Mandela as she knew him – a teacher who gave her the most valuable lessons of her life. A man who refused to be defined by his past, who forgave and respected all, but who was also frank, teasing and direct. As he renewed his country, he also freed Zelda from a closed world of fear and mistrust, giving her life true meaning. Now she shares his lasting and inspiring gifts with the world.
This is a book about love and second chances. It will touch your life and make you believe that every one of us, no matter who we are or what we have done, has the power to change.