We killed Mangy-Dog & other Mozambique stories is one for the reading around the world challenge and also for the African Reading Challenge. I came across it when I was browsing through my bookshelves looking for books by people with foreign-sounding names.
I have actually read it before — I read it when I bought it, about 15 years ago — but it’s short, so I thought I’d re-read it before ticking Mozambique off the list. I don’t remember it making much impact on me then, but this time I was impressed. It’s a slim (117 page) collection of vivid, fatalistic short stories, set in rural Mozambique and mainly told from a child’s perspective. Stylistically it has a kind of plain directness, in this translation at least. Kind of Hemingwayish. Not that I’ve read any Hemingway recently.
It seems to be out of print, unfortunately, but if you happen upon a copy somewhere, pick it up.
» The picture, Students returning from the school farm, was posted to Flickr by afronie and is used under a by-sa CC licence. It has no particular connection to the book except that it was taken in Mozambique.