THE New York based Kirkus Review magazine says author Anthony Mukwita has managed to bring out in his political thriller, the ‘political genius’ of President Edgar Lungu that has eluded rivals for a long time.

Kirkus adds that the book also succeeds in introducing the lawyer turned politician to the world as a major political player of special note, even though previously unknown beyond the Zambian borders.

This is contained in a latest review posted on the Kirkus website obtained by this newspaper, as Against all Odds: Zambia’s President Edgar Chagwa Lungu’s rough Journey to State House continues to make literature waves as a modern contemporary piece of history, locally and abroad.

“Mukwita locates in this abnegation the seeds of Lungu’s genius,” Kirkus Review says, “throughout Lungu’s political career, it was hard to see him coming but that was always his (Edgar Lungu) secret weapon.”

The New York based magazine fail to resist the temptation to take a dig at author Mukwita for allegedly penning a ‘campaign’ missive.

They, however, are quick to note that the author does justice to both the main character and opposition whom he ‘generally’ treats well.

President Lungu’s devotion to religion is not lost by the New York based reviewer that take the liberty to describe President Lungu as thus below in the book:
“The subject’s favourite book (subject being Edgar Lungu) must inevitably be the Bible, and the figure—Lungu—must possess no over-riding hunger for power, just a steady drive to do what’s best for the country,” Kirkus observes.

Despite what Kirkus notices as general and natural ‘limitations’ in Mukwita’s Edgar Lungu book, the magazine says: “Mukwita’s efforts (as an author) have paid off: this is a fine work to begin one’s reading about Zambia and the passions of its people.”

Kirkus adds that Mukwita’s book on the sixth President of Zambia is “a fond but clear-eyed look at a steady leader (Edgar Lungu) and the African nation (Zambia) on his shoulders.

The book is available on 78,000 online bookstores such as Barnes & Noble, Amazon while limited copies are available Bookworld in Zambia.

Below is the full review as posted on the American magazine’s website including the web link.

KIRKUS REVIEW

A debut political biography examines Zambia’s current head of state.

In his book, Zambia’s deputy ambassador to Sweden introduces the world’s readers to his boss, Edgar Chagwa Lungu, a relatively new president attempting to unify the African country’s warring factions and to diversify the nation’s copper-dependent economy. The 60-year-old Lungu’s tenure follows that of his fierce and flamboyant mentor, Michael Sata. Appointed by his predecessor to effectively run the country in Sata’s absence, “the acting president did not have the luxury to sit down and cry or mourn” when news of the leader’s death reached Zambia. Mukwita was by his side as Lungu witnessed Vice President Guy Scott’s appointment as acting president on Sata’s death but chose not to contest this action lest he be accused of treason. Mukwita locates in this abnegation the seeds of Lungu’s genius. Throughout Lungu’s political career, “it was hard to see him coming, but that was always his secret weapon.” The narrative tracks his rise to power, the contested 2015 election against the wealthy businessman Hakainde Hichilema, and Lungu’s subsequent efforts to shore up the landlocked country’s economy in the face of falling copper prices and rising inflation. With a strong track record of professional competence and a unique team of rivals in his cabinet, Lungu has maintained his dignity during “what some political commentators have described as the fastest rise in political office” to serve his nation stalwartly and boldly both at home and abroad.
Thoughtfulness and eloquence aside, this work is a campaign biography. The genre has its limitations. The subject’s favorite book must inevitably be the Bible, and the figure must possess no overriding hunger for power, just a steady drive to do what’s best for the country. This volume, however, aims for and achieves more than most such entries in the genre by repeatedly pausing to deliver thoughtful, researched, and exacting biographies of the major characters (the opposition figures are, generally, treated fairly) and to provide historical context for non-native readers. Mukwita’s efforts have paid off: this is a fine work to begin one’s reading about Zambia and the passions of its people.
A fond but clear-eyed look at a steady leader and the African nation on his shoulders.

Against all Odds-Zambia’s President Edgar Chagwa Lungu’s Rough Journey to State House
By Anthony Mukwita
Pub Date: Jan. 5th, 2017
ISBN: 978-1-4828-7726-7
Page count: 174pp
Publisher: PartridgeAfrica
Program: Kirkus Indie
Review Posted Online: April 20th, 2017
https://www.kirkusreviews.com/book-reviews/anthony-mukwita/against-all-odds2/
Kirkus Indie Kirkus Media LLC, 6411 Burleson Rd., Austin, TX 78744.


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