Monique and the Mango Rains
American Kris Holloway lovingly remembers her decadelong friendship with an extraordinary woman she met during a Peace Corps stint in Mali that began in 1989 in Monique and the Mango Rains. Monique Dembele, then 24, had two children and served as midwife and clinician for the village of Nampossela. She battled childhood malnutrition and disease, and brought contraceptives to local mothers, who often had little say in how many children they had. Seen through Holloway’s eyes, Monique’s life (from her unhappy arranged marriage to the other man she really loved to her tragic ending) is as compelling as any novel.