S is for Samora: A Lexical Biography of Samora Machel and the Mozambican Dream

Hurst Publishers, 2012; South Africa: University of KwaZulu Natal Press; USA: Oxford University Press.

Drawing on Sarah LeFanu’s own experiences as a cooperante in post-Independence Mozambique in the late 1970s, and on speeches, documents, and the memories of those who knew him, this biography presents the many different faces of the man Nelson Mandela has called ‘a true African revolutionary.’

‘Sarah LeFanu first visited Mozambique soon after its 1975 independence. … In a very personal way S is for Samora combines what she sees now with the memory of what she experienced as a solidarity worker in the late seventies. The book is vivid, clear-eyed, and tells a story that should be of interest to a wider audience than just those who have their own direct experience of Mozambique. This is the story of a young English woman and the exciting ‘Birth of a Nation’. Profoundly interesting and highly recommended.’ Henning Mankell  

‘This is an arresting and original biography … Mixing journalism, diary and academic research, LeFanu succeeds in offering one of the most wide-ranging accounts of Machel available to date … a gripping insight into the personal and political mix.’ Professor Patrick Chabal, King’s College, London

‘This A to Z of Samora Machel … works brilliantly … Whether you want to read from beginning to end or dip in, it is packed with history and many new and fascinating details. It should become a classic and could start a new trend.’ Richard Dowden, Director of the Royal African Society and author of Africa: Altered States, Ordinary Miracles

‘An important and readable rediscovery of Mozambique’s revolutionary history.’ Joseph Hanlon, author of Do Bicycles Equal Development in Mozambique?

‘A beautifully-written and fascinating insight into the recent history of Mozambique. LeFanu’s coverage of Samora is even-handed: he emerges as a gifted, good and charismatic man motivated by the principles of social justice and a form of nationalism that cut across colour, race and tribe. But she also portrays him as a human being, flawed at times by contradictions and failures. LeFanu explores the mythology around his significance and legacy in Mozambique today and those of Josina, his freedom fighter wife before her untimely death.  A brilliant book.’ Susan Williams, author of Who Killed Hammarskjold? The UN, The Cold War and White Supremacy in Africa

To buy: http://www.hurstpublishers.com/books/s-is-for-samora or click here: Buy

To look at some of Sarah’s Mozambican photos, click here:  Mozambique photos