The Ivory Crocodile is the mesmerizing story of an American whose longing to ‘know’ Africa produces the unexpected. Assigned to teach at a remote bush school, Nicole Spark immerses herself in village life. Though she gradually gains acceptance into the lives of Africans, her exotic ideal of the country, as well as her own identity as a white woman, begins to break down. Amid love and politics, progress and tradition, innocence and mistrust, Nicole looks for Africa—and finds herself. Her personal journey, however, brings the community to a startling crisis with unforgettable impact.
“Eileen Drew is a wonderful writer with a very special voice and experience. There’s unusual pleasure in this tale of the American in Africa because, one, it’s interesting—no hip slacker nonsense here—and two, it’s sensitive to the culture.” —Sandra Scofield, author of Opal on Dry Ground
“The Ivory Crocodile is an exquisite chronicle of the Western world’s never-ending obsession with mythic Africa, our callow romance with futility, both Conradian and evangelical, where we are compelled to perpetrate the disasters of our good intentions. Eileen Drew writes with extra ordinary clarity, lyricism and grace and, unlike so many novels published year to year, this one matters. Isak Dinesen, I think, would claim her as a literary granddaughter.” —Bob Shacochis, author of Swimming in the Volcano