Praise for The Fear

Christopher Hitchens published an essay on in which he discusses Robert Mugabe and Peter Godwin’s THE FEAR, remarking that book describes “a new sort of Zimbabwean, emancipated from racial and tribal feeling by a long common struggle against a man who doesn’t scruple to employ racial and tribal demagoguery.”

- Slate

“Mr. Godwin is an excellent writer…One of the bright spots in the book is where the unarmed American ambassador and his governance adviser stand down a group of government thugs engaged in terrorizing citizens. It makes the reader proud to be an American.”

- The Washington Times

“an important book, not least because Mr. Godwin names names—­­­of rapists, torturers and killers—­and one hopes that they get what's coming to them. In cataloging the victims, he shows the extraordinary courage of those standing up to Mr. Mugabe.”

- The Wall Street Journal

Chicago Tribune mention

“The book is devastatingly brilliant….incredibly vivid and haunting and, sadly, timely.”

- The Boston Globe

“Godwin’s book is not only extraordinary journalism; it is also a refutation of Mugabe’s big idea: that race determines everything….Godwin goes on to produce the most comprehensive account yet of the brutality that followed the 2008 general election.”

- Time Magazine

“the extraordinary power of Godwin’s narrative. The accretion of detail builds into a damning portrait of a regime that has lost all its moral bearings, a gang of thieves and murderers bent on holding power at any cost.”

- NY Times Book Review

“What stands out from Godwin’s gripping narrative is not just the scale of death and destruction that Mugabe is willing to inflict on his country for the sake of staying in power, but the extraordinary courage of Zimbabweans who defy his tyranny, knowing full well the consequences of doing so.”

- Washington Post

“In this way, his heartbreaking journey of witnessing, of getting the word out when no one else can, becomes the reader’s burden as well. The Fear is no cozy indulgence. There are no happy endings here. But as he has done before, Godwin weaves beauty into this devastation…And of course, however heavy the load for the reader, it is heaviest for the people of Zimbabwe, for those who cannot or will not leave, for those on the receiving end of beatings and torture. If Godwin can share that load, relieve them of just a small share, and we, as readers, can do the same for him, well, that seems a worthy and important thing indeed.”

- Christian Science Monitor - Books to Watch For review
Peter’s interview on NPR’s Morning Edition
Review on

PETER GODWIN’S latest book is the most powerful indictment of Robert Mugabe’s regime yet written, marking out the author as one of the sharpest observers of modern Africa.

The Economist

“This a book by a brave man about people who are braver still. Peter Godwin brings us closer to the filth of the Mugabe tyranny than is bearable and portrays with subtlety, authority, and respect those who, against all odds and at the cost of unimaginable suffering, continue the resistance against it. Their courage is the stuff of myth, and in Godwin they have found their chronicler.”

-- David Rieff, author of Swimming in a Sea of Death and A Bed for the Night: Humanitarianism in Crisis

“In the savage gangster world of Robert Mugabe’s Zimbabwe, Peter Godwin was able to go where other reporters cannot and tell us what others could not—because he is Zimbabwean, and knows what his country has been and could be. You don’t know whether to be more shocked by the monstrousness of the regime’s thugs or the luminous humanity of its opponents.”

-- James Traub, author of The Best Intentions: Kofi Annan and the UN in the Era of American World Power

“At last, a chronicle of the mess that is Zimbabwe. The Fear is an important book detailing the violent realities, the grotesque injustices, the hunger, the sadness, and a portrait of Mugabe, the tyrant who is the cause of it all. It is especially valuable because Godwin, born in Zimbabwe, is passionate and personal, as well as bold in his travel and scrupulous in his documentation.”

-- Paul Theroux, author of Ghost Train to the Eastern Star

“There is nothing on the subject of Robert Mugabe's terror state that comes even close to Peter Godwin's brilliant account. It took great courage to pursue this horror at close range, as Godwin did. This book will change utterly readers' perceptions of what is happening in this afflicted corner of Africa.”

-- Norman Rush, author of Mating and Mortals equally gripping, gut-wrenching report from this nation in terrible decline

-- The Very Short List

Praise for When a Crocodile Eats the Sun

If I had to place Godwin into a fold – a category – of writers, I would bracket him with Ryszard Kapuscinski and Jonathan Kaplan (the viscerally brilliant South African doctor/writer). Godwin really can stand shoulder to shoulder with the best of them.


The Independent

Shocking, moving and unputdownable


I have read this book twice, and wept twice

New York Times

A powerful, emotional and provoking travel book that should be read by everyone.

Guardian Unlimited Books of the Year

Heartbreaking...a family secret, history, autobiography and travelogue

The Times

It's a well-told book, mingling as it does the personal with the wider political scene

Sunday Telegraph

Peter Godwin's affectionate portrait of his parents...and detailed account of the farm invasions

Daily Telegraph

This is both a moving family memoir and a sobering account...of the planet's nastiest dictatorships

Mail on Sunday

A powerful, emotional and provoking travel book that should be read by everyone heading to Southern Africa

Guardian Unlimited Books of the Year

Heartfelt,absorbing and profoundly moving

Sunday Times

a succession of powerful, poignant scenes.

Daily Telegraph

Heartbreaking . . . Godwin plainly loves Africa, and he captures the baffling wayward contradictions of its people, their cruelties and unexpected kindnesses, their nobility of spirit in the face of appalling conditions, with humour and grace

Daily Mail

A wonderful book . . . beautifully written, packed with insight and free of rancour

Literary Review

A strong, heroic book . . . too vivid to bear and too central to our concerns to ignore

Edmund White

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