How Beautiful We Were
- Author: Imbolo Mbue
- Publisher: Canongate
- ISBN: 9781838851354
Set in the fictional African village of Kosawa, How Beautiful We were tells the story of a people living in fear amidst environmental degradation wrought by an American oil company. Pipeline spills have rendered farmlands infertile. Children are dying from drinking toxic water. Promise of clean-up and financial reparations to the villagers are made - and ignored. The country's government, led by a brazen dictator, exists to serve its own interests only. Left with few choices, the people of Kosawa decide to fight back. But their fight will come at s steep price... one which generation after generation will have to pay.
Told through the perspective of a generation of children and the family of a girl named Thula, How Beautiful We Were is a masterful exploration of what happens when the reckless drive for profit, coupled with the ghost of colonialism, comes up against one community's determination to hold onto its ancestral land and a young women's willingness to sacrifice everything for the sake of her people's freedom.