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Leopard Glue / Cannibal Country, Man-Eaters Don't Knock / Man-Eaters and Masai Spears, Rogue Elephants / Man-Eaters Don't Laugh, Chuma / Chuma Finds a Baby Review by Cindy West

By Charles Ludwig
King's Bookshelf Publications
35 Whitehall St.
Bellville, PA 17004

Have you ever wanted to walk the well-worn yet dangerous paths of African tribal lands to see what life is really like for missionaries there? You can do that from the comfort and safety of your own home as you read about life from the vantage point of a couple of young villagers and their missionary friend in this series of books.

Filled with lots of adventure, these eight stories (two per book) will keep you on the edge of your seat from beginning to end. The main characters, Ndama, Ochella, and Chuma, struggle to cope with the often fearful life of an African tribesman and learn to follow the "true religion" of Missionary Green. Each of the eight- to ten-chapter stories shows the African characters learning to be courageous deliverers of the Gospel message to their own people.

The stories are based on the author's time as a missionary child in Africa in the early 20th century, but much of the information rings true for missionaries and native people today. You get a full picture of what life is like for both the tribesmen and the missionaries sent to preach the Gospel, and you will be drawn to pray for missionaries as you are reminded of the sacrifices they make daily in the name of the Lord. Mr. Ludwig makes no bones about the uncivilized, often cruel way of life among the tribes. You will be exposed to witch doctors, man-eating animals, threats of torture and murder, and other very true aspects of African life. The missionaries often face very grave situations, but Jesus is always the victor in the end.

Because of the violence and mature themes of the stories, I recommend the books for children in 4th grade and above. And even though using them within a unit isn't necessary, they would fit in well with a study on missionaries or Africa. Boys will especially love the adventure and narrow escapes!

Product review by Cindy West, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, June 2008