The first-ever book to tell Nelson Mandela’s life through the eyes of a child who was raised by him, chronicling Ndaba Mandela’s life living with, and learning from, one of the greatest leaders and humanitarians the world has ever known.
In a story that has never been told,Going to the Mountaintells the tale of how Nelson Mandela steered his grandson Ndaba from his reckless youth (shirking school, fighting in gangs) to his maturation into a fully realized and principled adulthood–all as an often-single parent in his years after political imprisonment and through his landmark presidency of South Africa. On a scale both intimate and epic, the book will detail the gripping arc of Ndaba’s own extraordinary journey, which mirrors that of South Africa’s, from the segregated Soweto ghettos into which he was born, to the presidential mansion in which he grew up, and the challenged times in which he lives now.
Embedded deeply throughout are the rich tribal wisdom and folktales of Nelson Mandela’s Xhosa tribe, which he adored sharing with his grandson–and which influenced both men throughout their lives and helped change the world. Going to the Mountainvividly illustrates the important life lessons Nelson taught his grandson about freedom, forgiveness, leadership, education and self-discipline, strength of body and spirit, integrity and responsibility, respect for oneself and others, resistance in the right ways, times and places, passion for life and purpose, and peace. As readers will learn, Nelson was proudly Xhosa–and its stories fuel so much of his life’s work. Indeed, the title of the book is taken from the Xhosa word, Ulwaluko (“Going to the Mountain”), an ancient Xhosa coming-of-age rite, which Nelson himself once endured and through which he (standing in place of Ndaba’s father, who was dying of HIV-AIDS) proudly shepherds his grandson.
For years, people have asked Ndaba to write his remarkable story in a book–including, significantly, many of his prominent supporters. Now, with the approach of Nelson Mandela’s 100th birthday in July 2018, and global momentum building around the occasion and his foundation’s efforts, Ndaba is being embraced by an extraordinary network of supporters–and he feels ready. This is the time.
It is, at day’s end, a message of unlocking the power within each of us–the cautionary tale of a life that could go one way or the other, depending upon the intervention of a caring soul; and the ability, and awesome power, of an individual life to serve as a catalyst for change.