These days there’s no lack of good books to read. The trick is finding a way to sort through them for the best ones!
Here at IndieReader, our job is to recommend the best self-published, hybrid, and small press books. Those that receive a rating of 4-5 stars (the top being 5 stars) are deemed IndieReader Approved.
Find out more about an author who meets that criteria.
Ndirangu Githaiga’s literary journey is marked by a profound dedication to narrating stories that blend fact and fiction seamlessly. His first book, “The People of Ostrich Mountain,” takes readers on a transformative journey, primarily set in Kenya during the 1950s, a time marked by war and the fight for independence. The story unravels through the lens of a family’s quest for self-determination and ultimately spans five decades and three continents.
The inspiration for Ndirangu’s writing stems from a lifelong passion for storytelling. In high school, he excelled in essay competitions, setting the stage for his future as a writer. Growing up with an English teacher for a mother, he was immersed in a world of literature, reading works from English and African authors which ignited his passion for words.
However, the path to becoming a full-fledged author was far from traditional. Ndirangu’s journey took a detour when he pursued a career in medicine. As he completed medical school, residency, and fellowship training, he put his literary aspirations on hold, yet the yearning to write never waned.
Championing Nuance in African Narratives
For Ndirangu, one of the central challenges in his writing journey has been dispelling the misconceptions about Africa prevalent in the Western world. He recognizes that many people perceive Africa as a monolithic “black box” without acknowledging the diversity in countries, cultures, and histories across the continent. Ndirangu took it upon himself to bridge this gap through his historical fiction. “I want the people who read my book to be changed in their understanding,” he says. “I want to educate and give them more perspective.”
In his work, especially in his first book, Ndirangu intertwines truth and fiction, making it challenging for readers to discern where one ends and the other begins. He masterfully depicts the complexity of African history, particularly Kenya’s fight for independence, and its connection to the broader human experience.
Success Beyond Book Sales
Success for Ndirangu isn’t solely measured by book sales but rather by the transformation of his readers’ understanding of Africa. His book “Place of Cool Waters” delves into the journey of Jude Wilson, an adopted black child growing up in the Pacific Northwest who travels to Kenya to visit the grave of the founder of the Boy Scout movement, his childhood hero. The story explores themes of identity, alienation, and subtle racism. Through his writing, Ndirangu aims to debunk stereotypes and offer readers a deeper perspective on African countries, cultures, and the intricate human connections that traverse borders.
Continuing the Journey
As Ndirangu reflects on his journey, he remains deeply dedicated to his career as a physician while pursuing his passion for writing. Writing rejuvenates him and provides an outlet for processing the stress of working in the intensive care unit.
To learn more about Ndirangu and his work, visit his website.
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