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A book about making friends with a country - William Yeoman for The West Australian

"Van der Eecken writes with generosity, frankness and insight; consequently her own character and the others she depicts, such as the wonderful culinary genius Mrs Banda, are revealed in all their flawed beauty against a shifting backdrop of social, political and cultural perceptions and realities. Part-memoir, part-travelogue, part-coming-of-age story, Cafe d'Afrique is a book about making friends, not just with people but with a country."

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A very honest book about why people fall in love with Africa - Guy Poppe, journalist

"In Cafe d'Afrique, young, naive and somewhat idealistic Tineke, living in Zambia, is creating opportunities to give more exposure to African culture. It proves to be a hard ride. She comes across swindlers, gets cheated, has to cope with corruption and tackle bureaucracy. A dream threatens to become a nightmare. At the end Cafe d'Afrique has to close its doors but Tineke has grown into a mature, grown up young woman. "The fruit bearing tree I had nurtured was not the Cafe, it had always and only ever been myself". A very honest book explaining why people fall in love with Africa against all odds."

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Objective in an amazingly subjective way - Sylvia Peterson, Perth

I liked the main character - she is a nice mix of boldness and naive innocence. I liked the way the cross-cultural differences were handled - you didn't fall into the trap of mythologizing Africa. You highlighted the cross-cultural difficulties and threw an informative light on the social, economic and political aspects that historians and writers of travelogues fail to record. You are objective in an amazingly subjective way.
I love the way you interweave friendship, food and culture. Beautiful descriptions. I felt like I was there.

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