In his novella, Lalibela’s Wise Man, Matshona Dhliwayo, tells the story of Christian, a man whose father has just died and who has no family but two hateful brothers. Alone and depressed, Christian is soon sent on a mysterious trip to visit a wise monk in Ethiopia, from whom he learns the importance of several character traits. Mr. Dhliwayo gives insight in this book into various virtues that should be an essential part in each person’s life. Each day at the monastery, Christian is taught a lesson which ranges from catching his own food to giving up one his favorite possessions. At the end of the week, the old monk explains to him the meaning of each of the lessons, and on the last day, reveals a great secret that has plagued Christian for years. As Christian applies the wisdom of the monk, he learns the truly important things in life, and finally finds happiness. Like all books, this novella should be read with discernment, but it conveys great moral truths that are necessary in building one’s character. With an intriguing plot and a strong focus on morals, this book will encourage its reader to ponder his own character.
Recommended for ages 14 and up.
~Reviewed by April