Congo: Spirit of Darkness (Volume 1)
by Mayi Ngwala and Allain Ngwala
NAACP Image Awards nominated for Outstanding Literary Work. On the smooth, cool rock Layila watches as her elders beat the dust from their bright clothes, singing sweet songs of gods and demons; dreamlike stories of fire and water, forest and sky. She has never seen the evil spirits from her mother’s songs, those that dwell in the deepest jungle, but Layila knows she must always keep watch for them, for they bring certain death and destruction to all. So when Layila sees the strange pale beings, with their unnatural gait, their sharp, unfamiliar smells, approaching her people at the waterside, she knows she must run. Vanishing herself into the enfolding gloom of the jungle she watches as Kimbindi, spirit of darkness white men shackle and ravage her mother, her sisters, her friends, before leading them away from the safety of the forest path and into unknown territories. The preadolescent is lost in this tangled expanse of untamed and merciless wilderness in the company of her friends. Both watch as the land of Congo is ravaged by cold-hearted aggressors, who infect it with a darkness that spreads down the rivers and paths, like poison in the blood vessels, through the very heart of Africa. The Dark Continent. A wild and savage land whose tribal drums pulse across the sky like lifeblood through the heart of Africa. Susan Bailey Dawson, a retired journalist and lifelong abolitionist, is read her memoir, whilst on her death bed, telling the tale of a journey to the heart of darkness and of her love interest, Captain Bison Van Lanterman a henchman for slave traders and a devotee of the King of the Belgians. Congo natives tell the story of their nation’s history in a captivating title that evokes the cultural richness of their now adulterated homeland preserving Congo’s original beauty for future generations.