Imaro : Imaro

  • by Charles Saunders
  • Narrated by Mirron Willis
  • Series: Imaro
  • 11 hrs and 33 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Saunders' novel fuses the narrative style of fantasy fiction with a pre-colonial, alternate Africa. Inspired by and directly addresses the alienation of growing up an African American fan of science fiction and fantasy, which to this day remains a very ethnically homogonous genre. It addresses this both structurally (via its unique setting) and thematically (via its alienated, tribeless hero-protagonist). The tribal tensions and histories presented in this fantasy novel reflect actual African tribal histories and tensions, and provide a unique perspective to current and recent conflicts in Africa, particularly the Rwandan genocide and the ongoing conflict in The Sudan.


What the Critics Say

"Saunders alone has appreciated the potential of Africa as a backdrop for heroic fantasy." (Publishers Weekly)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Sword & Sorcery in Fantasy Africa

I finally read this Africanized sword & sorcery tale (or, "Sword & Soul" tale, if you will). Here's the bullet points:

• Capable if not overly-impressive writing that sometimes gets mired in the protagonist's semi-believable viewpoint. I'm pretty sure I would like these stories better if the main character's ideas were more hidden and more time was spent on dialogue and description/atmosphere.

• Cool enemies that felt part Lovecraftian, part African folklore, and all demon. Honestly, these were by far my favorite bits of the stories. The best was a kind of equally gross and voluptuous many-breasted hippo demon who wants to "love" the hero to death beneath the waters of its pool.

• A heavy Burroughsian influence, to the story's detriment I think. Men fall into three camps: the mighty-thewed and invincible protagonist, yes-men, and traitors. Women are of a single type: voluptuous, clever, slavishly devoted, and generally either capable, victims, or invisible as the plot and their hero-lord-husband needs them to be.

• I don't know if I can expertly speak to the Africanized nature of this, but my impression is that a) it does a great job of incorporating African tropes, but b) they feel like Westernized versions - not like an insider treatment. That's just my impression.

I should add that the novel is from a collection of stories written in the 1970's and the author is an African American currently living in Canada.
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- Troy

Awesome Story.... Imaro please be a movie!

Saunders wrote the Imaro stories not only to give fantasy ‘a black character that matters’, but to also have the kind of stories he wanted to read himself – a worthy motivation that has led to the creation of some great works of fantasy. 
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- June

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-21-2014
  • Publisher: Audible Studios