Binti, a thirteen year-old girl in Malawi, is very happy with her life. The youngest of three children, she stars in a radio show called ‘Gogo’s Family’, attends a private school and mocks her older sister for being madly in love with her boyfriend. Her mother has died some years earlier and her father runs ‘The Heaven Shop’, a coffin-making business which shows no sign of ever being short of work.
Her world is turned upside-down by the illness and subsequent death of her father. Her family is separated and it is only when she goes to live with her grandmother that things begin to improve.
This is a Young Adult book which deals honestly with some of the ways that young girls can be infected with AIDS and the consequences of this devastating disease. It’s a quick read which explains why the Stephen Lewis Foundation is doing all it can to help the grandmothers of Africa.
Recommended for those who want an introduction to AIDS in Africa.