Chameleon Days: An American Boyhood in Ethiopia

Chameleon Days: An American Boyhood in Ethiopia


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Chameleon Days: An American Boyhood in Ethiopia by Tim Bascom

In 1964, at the age of three, Tim Bascom is thrust into a world of eucalyptus trees and stampeding baboons when his family moves from the Midwest to Ethiopia. The unflinchingly observant narrator of this memoir reveals his missionary parents’ struggles in a sometimes hostile country. Sent reluctantly to boarding school in the capital, young Tim finds that beyond the gates enclosing that peculiar, isolated world, conflict roils Ethiopian society. When secret riot drills at school are followed with an attack by rampaging students near his parents' mission station, Tim witnesses the disintegration of his family’s African idyll as Haile Selassie’s empire begins to crumble.

Like Alexandra Fuller’s Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight, Chameleon Days chronicles social upheaval through the keen yet naive eyes of a child. Bascom offers readers a fascinating glimpse of missionary life, much as Barbara Kingsolver did in The Poisonwood Bible.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780618658695
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date: 06/14/2006
Pages: 252
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.25(h) x 0.56(d)

About the Author

TIM BASCOM spent much of his childhood in Ethiopia, where his father, adoctor, worked in mission hospitals. A graduate of the Nonfiction WritingProgram at the University of Iowa, he has been published in The Best American Travel Writing. He lives in Newton, Iowa, with his wife and two sons.

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