Most American readers have never set foot in Africa; its customs and languages may seem distant and even foreign. But the words handed down by its people contain the same wisdom handed down throughout the world. In From the Heart of Africa, Canadian author Eric Walters presents 15 proverbs, gathered during his travels throughout Africa.
Representing many African countries and cultures, the proverbs are short and simple. A place of origin and a brief description (written at a child’s level) supplement each proverb, but the accompanying artwork is what truly elevates this book. The artists are from all walks of life—a street artist, a horticulturalist, art teachers and designers all lend their creativity—and they use a variety of mediums and styles. While each illustration is unique, shared traditions and cultural pride create continuity from page to page. Collectively, the images are vibrant, celebratory and full of texture.
A foreword informs readers on the importance of oral tradition, making this an important addition to school libraries. From the Heart of Africa reminds us that while Africa is at a great distance, the soul of the continent—and humanity—is never far.