Tanzania: My Country As I See It was a disappointment. Peter E. Temu had a chance to shed light on the hardships and triumphs of his country and he instead gives the reader a book that was not much more informative than Tanzania’s Wikipedia page. The problems with this book can be partially attributed to its format. Tanzania: My Country As I See It originated as a series of articles written for a Tanzanian publication, so each “chapter” is limited by length, and I would imagine, content. If Tanzania: My Country As I See It had been published as an independent work, I imagine that Temu would have taken a more critical, developed approach to his subject. Instead, this work is mediocre at best.
The book suffered from an overabundance of simplicity. Is corruption a problem? Stop being corrupt. Is poverty a problem? Make more jobs. Is hunger a problem? Grow more food. Temu is a good writer, but his simplistic solutions leave a lot to be desired.
It has been a while since I’ve written a review. I began my Peace Corps Training in July, and was sworn in on September 12th. As a now-resident of Tanzania, I feel like I can review Peter E. Temu’s work with a more critical eye. And unfortunately, it is still not very good. Temu does a solid job of identifying Tanzania’s problems, unfortunately his solutions are not up to snuff. With my now limited internet access, publishing reviews has become more difficult. My life has become more hectic, and I’ve had less time for reading. But I’m enjoying learning about Tanzania for myself, and being here is far more revealing than Temu’s book. This unfortunately may be my last review, since reliable internet service is a rarity in Tanzania (one problem Temu never identified in Tanzania: My Country As I See It). However, I look forward to completing a full Cannonball in 2016, upon my return to the States.