Author Peter Riva has another hit with his latest novel of Africa, entitled Murder on Safari. We were delighted to join his virtual book tour to share news of his book.
You can see his entire tour schedule here on iRead Book Tours.
In Murder on Safari, his character, Mbuno, enriched the story greatly, with his love and knowledge of the land. When we learned he was an actual guide, we asked Mr. Riva to share more about the man.
The Real Mbuno, by Peter Riva
Mbuno was a legendary African safari guide, to hunters and later hunters with cameras. He was Liangulu (of the Liangulu – Waliangulu) as were his ancestors before him. I first met Mbuno in 1985 when he was in his late 60s at Hog Ranch where Peter Beard (a client) had become embroiled in a land confiscation scheme against him that Jackie Onassis, I. and the French Cultural Ministry were trying to stop.
Mbuno and I spent a few weeks together, trekking in the bush, mainly with me listening, getting to know him, and his history and that of his people while we waited out the authorities to stop the persecution of Beard. Over the next 20+ years or so I came back regularly on business, filming and so on, and Mbuno was always happy to see me and I him – we always hired him for our filming expeditions.
He had a connection to the earth, the place of East Africa, almost as if he were a walking part of the landscape. A realist and a visionary, Mbuno knew the demise of his people and the elephant were inexorably intertwined with the corruption of E. African officials, the well-meaning do-gooders trying to keep elephants free yet protected, the need for tourist dollars with large fenced-in (i.e. non-migratory) parks and, never least, finding someone to blame. Always easier to blame the traditional hunter than the real cause.
Mbuno didn’t hunt elephant when he was younger for ivory. He hunted for tribal food with bow and arrow and his tribe never wasted one single thing of any carcass. The ivory? “Some people wanted it, I do not know why. So we traded for corn.” A far cry from an AK-47 slaughter all “hunters especially traditional hunters” were accused of. Now there are no Waliangulu left really, yet the slaughter continues. Mbuno died a decade or so ago and with him a whole way of life and experience.
Official Book Description
Only a reality TV producer and an expert safari guide can stop a terrorist attack.
Every adventure starts at the fringes of civilization. For expert safari guide Mbuno and wildlife television producer Pero Baltazar, filming in the wild of East Africa should have been a return to the adventure they always loved. This time they’d be filming soaring vultures in northern Kenya and giant sea crocodiles in Tanzania with Mary, the daughter of the world’s top television evangelist, the very reverend Jimmy Threte.
But when a terrorist cell places them in the crosshairs, there is suddenly no escape and they must put their filming aside and combine all their talents to thwart an all-out al-Shabaab terrorist attack on Jimmy Threte’s Christian gathering of hundreds of thousands in Nairobi, Kenya.
Peter Riva spent many months over thirty years in Africa, many of them with the legendary guides for East African white hunters and adventurers. He created a TV series (seventy-eight 1-hour episodes) in 1995 called WildThings for Paramount TV. Passing on the fables, true tales and insider knowledge of these last reserves of true wildlife is a passion.
For more information on iRead Book Tours, check their website here.