The story of Northern Rhodesia becoming Zambia is like a patchwork quilt, and that is exactly how this book portrays it, relying on the words and phrases of the people who lived it to tell the tale. It is the only way such a diverse experience could be given a balanced exposition.
My father was District Commissioner at Broken Hill (now Kabwe) at the time of independence. He stayed until the end of 1969, working initially in the Zambian government's 'Youth Development' ministry. I was born in Kasempa Mission Hospital, and at school in Broken Hill's Parker Primary and then Lusaka Boys School before being sent south to Springvale in Southern Rhodesia. When I moved to the UK, I went to a school where the bursar was another DC from Northern Rhodesia. With that background, of course many of the names and almost all of the stories are familiar to me.
We were in no way refugees, and I have been lucky all my life, but I find my memory of the shock of being uprooted from Africa and replanted in the UK is echoed and re-echoed in these stories.
It was never one of the glamorous countries of Africa, but NR/Z put a marker in all our souls - witness the associations that still meet all over the world.
Anyone who was there, or anyone who has the slightest interest in a balanced view of this part of history should read this book.