A Finalist for The Governor Normal’s Award for Nonfiction in Canada

In this indelible memoir that recollects the lifetime of her exceptional 90-5-12 months vintage grandmother, Guardian journalist Aida Edemariam tells the tale of brand new Ethiopia—a country that may go through a tumultuous transformation from feudalism to monarchy to Marxist revolution to democracy, over the path of 1 century.

Born within the northern Ethiopian town of Gondar in approximately 1916, Yetemegnu used to be married and had given delivery ahead of she grew to become fifteen. Because the daughter of a socially distinguished guy, she additionally presented her husband, a negative but proficient pupil, the chance to grow to be crucial spiritual chief.

Over the following many years Yetemegnu might bear peculiar trials: the dying of a few of her youngsters; her husband’s imprisonment; and the detention of considered one of her sons. She witnessed the Fascist invasion of Ethiopia and {the subsequent|the following} resistance, suffered Allied bombardment and exile from her town; lived via a bloody revolution and the nationalization of her land. She won audiences with Emperor Haile Selassie I to argue for justice for her husband, for revenge, and for her youngsters’s safety, and fought courtroom battles to protect her property towards tough males. However sustained, partially, by means of her fierce trust within the Virgin Mary and in Orthodox Christianity, Yetemegnu survived. She even realized to learn, in her sixties, and ultimately made a pilgrimage to Jerusalem.

Told in Yetemegnu’s mesmerizing voice and full of a brilliant forged of characters—emperors and empresses, clergymen and students, clergymen and nuns, archbishops and slaves, Marxist revolutionaries and wartime double marketers—The Spouse’s Tale introduces a lady each imperious and susceptible; a mom, widow, and businesswoman whose deep religion and a lot of travails by no means quashed her love of laughter, mischief and dancing; a fighter whose existence used to be formed by means of direct touch with the risky occasions that remodeled her country.

An intimate memoir that provides a wide ranging view of Ethiopia’s contemporary historical past, The Spouse’s Tale takes us deep into the panorama, rituals, social categories, and tradition of this historical, continuously mischaracterized, richly advanced, and unforgettable land—and into the guts of 1 indomitable lady.