From Publishers Weekly
In this gripping, layered analysis of the brutal civil war in Sudan, Scroggins examines the complex relationship between the West and troubled Africa. She studies it through the experiences of Emma McCune, a romantic, idealistic British aid worker who married a Sudanese warlord responsible for the kind of violence she had been trying to ameliorate. "Emma's War" is what Sudanese called the battle that broke out within the Sudanese rebel movement in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Scroggins, who reported from Sudan for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, plumbs her subject's experiences without engaging in crude psychology as she tracks Emma's early childhood and the suicide of her father. While in college, the restless, adventurous and striking-looking Emma developed a growing fascination with Africa, and African men. Through her keen observations and fluid writing, Scroggins shows how, after arriving in the Sudan, McCune came to drop her veneer as an aid worker and become both second wife to a rebel leader and apologist for the atrocities of rebel groups. McCune, the author writes, was a "natural partisan" with an idealism that "was out of place in the context of a ruthless African civil war." But this is more than just the story of one Westerner gone native. In Scroggins's deft hands, McCune also becomes a symbol for those Westerners who, while well intentioned, eventually harm the developing world more than they help it and become disillusioned in the process.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
From Library Journal
Neatly complementing Rieff's A Bed for the Night (above), here's the story of relief worker Emma McCune, who ended up marrying the local warlord in Sudan.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.