Facing the Lion: Growing Up Maasai on the African Savanna

Facing the Lion: Growing Up Maasai on the African Savanna

by Joseph Lemasolai Lekuton, Herman Viola


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Joseph Lemasolai Lekuton gives American kids a firsthand look at growing up in Kenya as a member of a tribe of nomads whose livelihood centers around the raising of cattle. Here's a fascinating introduction to a vibrant culture few outsiders ever see!

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780792272977
Publisher: National Geographic Society
Publication date: 10/11/2005
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 128
Sales rank: 143,246
Product dimensions: 5.23(w) x 8.25(h) x 0.35(d)
Lexile: 720L (what's this?)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

Joseph Lamsolai Lekuton grew up in a nomadic Maasai village in northern Kenya and came to the United States in his late teens to pursue his education. He taught at The Langley School in northern Virginia and is actively involved in community development projects in rural Kenya. Through his work with several nonprofit organizations, Lekuton has provided more than a hundred nomadic children with education scholarships, established the Karare Boarding School, and constructed a water system delivering clean water to a dozen villages in northern Kenya. He holds a B.A. and an M.A. from St. Lawrence University and a master’s in international education policy from Harvard. He is the youngest recipient of Kenya’s Order of the Grand warrior, a presidential award given for exemplary service to the country. Lekuton divides his time between Kenya and the Washington D.C. area.

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Facing the Lion : Growing Up Maasai on the African Savanna 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 27 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Facing the Lion: Growing up Maasai on the African Savanna, written by Joseph Lemasolai Lekuton, is a unique memoir about about a boy’s journey of reaching out to a new and unexplored way of life.  He goes from growing up on the African savanna to an American University.  Lekuton and his family are known as nomads.  A nomad is a person or group of people who move continuously from one place to another, never establishing a real home. While keeping his nomadic culture close with him, Luketon attempts to learn a whole new way of life.  The author does a good job of explaining the particular aspects of his culture while explaining the differences living as nomad.  Also the author uses a unique story outline to display the sequence of events.  Although this memoir has many great aspects, it’s lack descriptions at times which may leave the reader wanting more. Despite this I recommend this book to teens or older because of the lesson it teaches you about reaching out to learn more than your own culture.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was a wonderful and engaging story about the experiences of childhood in an African culture, which allowed me to envision this event from a perspective different from my own. The author gave me an opportunity to learn about his environment and the influences that defined his cultural experiences. I think it is a fantastic book for young children to understand that the experiences of childhood is unique within every culture.
alexandrose on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Joseph is a boy from Keny and he is a boy who met a Lion and he ran from it with his brothers and some warriors. Later he goes to a school and then he goes to a boarding school in Nakuru and becomes a key player in their football team they win a great match and the president sees that and lets him later go to work in a bank. He meets a person from St. Lawrence University and later goes there and he becomes a teacher in McLean. I recommen this book for people who likes the wild and some stories of people on the planes.
JohnnyBrooks on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Joseph Lemasolai Lekuton is from Northern Kenya. He was born into the Ariaal subgroup of the Maasai, and lived a nomadic lifestyle. This book tells his story from birth, where he immediately began his life as a nomad, till completing university in the U.S.A.A fascinating story filled with lots of insight into the Maasai culture. It was written with a younger reader in mind, and is truly a very easy read. Joseph will not win any literary awards for this book, or at least should not, but he is adept at story telling. I particularly enjoyed his story of meeting President Daniel Arap Moi.This is the first book about Kenya I have read, despite living here for five years now. Perhaps more will be in my future reading list.My biggest complaint is that he did not challenge the deficiencies of his culture. I wish he would have talked more about the inequality that exist between the sexes. He did mention that girls often marry men 15 years older than themselves. However he failed to mention that those girls are very often children when they marry those older men.A good book for the kids, as long as some follow up is added on gender issues, and the rights of children.
darwonk on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book is not only about Joseph Lemasolai Lekuton facing a lion, but is also about him facing his life. He tells you how he lived, where he lived, his traditions, ex,,ex,,, This is a perfect book for people who like personal memoirs.
ywoo on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book is about a 6 year old boy named Joseph Lemasolai Lekuton who is living in a dry village in Kenya. He tells about his life about facing the lion and the circumcision. There was a problem because Lekuton had to go to school but didn't have enough money to send to school. But after Joseph met the president of Kenya he goes to school in America and becomes a teacher and earn money. I like the part when Joseph has this circumcision because he tells how he felt, and what is happening and also he doesn't tell but shows that he is becoming a real man. When I read this part I thought that in Kenya it isn't easy to become a real man.
_Zoe_ on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is the autobiography of a Maasai man with a Western education. It was written for children, and focuses on Lekuton's childhood experiences. He comes from a family of nomadic cow-herders, but Kenyan law required each family to send one child to elementary school. Lekuton was the one chosen, and he ended up enjoying his studies and excelling at school. Throughout the book, he emphasizes the tensions involved in belonging to two completely separate worlds. He wants to preserve his Maasai heritage while at the same time taking advantage of the opportunities afforded by education, and I found that his situation was incredibly thought-provoking. It's generally taken as a foregone conclusion that education is a good thing that should be available to as many people as possible, but in this story it wasn't so clear-cut. The Maasai are shown as a people capable of surviving on their own, with their own culture and way of life, and I found it a bit disturbing that they were forced to send one of their children off to school run by Christian missionaries, where they were taught Christian values, wore Western-style school uniforms, and were baptized and given Christian names. Lekuton himself fully appreciates his education and the doors that it opened to him, but I still find myself wondering about the changes that are being imposed on traditional cultures. This is a good thing, since I love a book that makes me think.I was also fascinated by the descriptions of Maasai culture itself, something that I had previously known very little about. I only wish that this book had been longer and more detailed--I know, it's for children, but still. This book has left me intrigued, and I'll probably be seeking out more books about the Maasai. I'd strongly recommend this one to just about anyone; the one good thing about its length is that there's no excuse not to read it!
zmalensek on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book is ok but I did not really like it. It is about a boy who has a lot of problems in his life and one day he gets a lot of money and brings his family back up to life.
adamjohn on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Lekuton, a six year old Maasai boy, lives in the African Savanna with his family. Then one day, he has to go to school. He hates it at first, but then he realizes that you have to be smart to have a good life. He wanted to go to a good college. But he has a tough time at school. Can he survive?
kosukes on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book is about a boy called Lekuton who is scared to face a lion. He lives in the savanna and everyone doesnt have any money or clean water and foods. The problem in this story is that he didnt have a job yet. but atlast, he gets a job. He was hired because he played soccer and the president okayed him to get a job.
waldhaus1 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Simple, but very powerful tale of what it means to grow up Masai
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Write the story! Please! And you can check out my fanfic at result one if you want to. Thanks! From sisi
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Facing the lion         This is a very will empowering story about a young boy facing the challenges from his long childhood. This story is a book Facing the Lion. The book starts with Lection, the author.   He was a young boy who lived in Kenya with the native tribe. He went to school under Kenya law and eventually moved up to a more qualified school. \in his stay there he became very good friends with the president of Kenya. Then he went to a bank in Kenya to earn money, and when he was there he got recruited to a school in America on full scholarship.   He was scared of America because Lection herd rumors that in America it was dangerous. He was brought by two girls to his dorm and realized it wasn't a terrible place. He graduated the school and got his masters in teaching math.  He was accepted to Harvard to get his doctors degree. After that he got a job teaching math at a prestigious privet school. I liked this book and would recommend it for adults 30 and up. I think they would be fascinated by this novel and the accomplishments of a boy from Kenya. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am reading this with my 7th grade class! It is just Amazing! I love it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book o its wonderful you are going to love it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Best book ever i warmed my heart seeing what joseph had to go throuhg walking miles almost every day barefoot that is why we have to appreciate what we have
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