Title: A Good Different
Author: Harvey Yoder
Major Themes: Kenya
Synopsis: Two hurting people struggle to survive in hard conditions in Kenya.
You know how sometimes a book will sit on the shelf for many years before you finally get around to reading it? That’s how it was with A Good Different. I’m not sure how many years we have had it, but probably three or four—and I finally opened it and started reading it a couple of weeks ago. Wow—I had no idea what I was missing out on! This is an amazing story.
Musikali grew up in a small village of herdsmen in rural Kenya. As a preteen, he lost the use of one eye when it got infected, but he was still able to herd the cows for his family. Meanwhile, in another, nearby village, Joyce was growing up destitute and starving, with a mother who had no way to make a living and an extended family who didn’t care about her. Life was hard for both of these young people, especially Joyce.
After many years of struggling for survival, Joyce thought life would be better when she married Musikali—but then he started drinking. Once again, life was very hard, especially when she found herself with three tiny children after only two years of marriage—and no husband. Musikali had abandoned her. They eventually got together again, but life only continued to get harder. And then one day, Joyce’s only friend took her to church. Suddenly, her outlook on life changed drastically, although circumstances were still dire.
Even though I could tell from the introduction to the book what had to happen at some point in the story, I was so drawn in to the story that I couldn’t put it down. I couldn’t believe how things went from impossibly horrible to even worse—over and over again. I had no idea a woman could survive what Joyce went through. If you want to learn more about God’s power to change lives and be inspired in your walk with God, read A Good Different. It is a great book.
WARNING: Not for children. There is a fair amount of violence in the story.
Reading Independently—Ages 15 and Above, Adults