Author: Yann Fastier

Ages: 13+

288 pages


  • A great novel about war and colonization that sheds light on forgotten African heroines: the female army of Dahomey.

    Dahomey, 1892. In order to assert its influence against Germany who backed the army of the king of Dahomey, France sent troops to this independent kingdom, which later became a colony and is now called Benin. The doctor of this expeditionary force takes his son, Alex, with him, in order to "make a man out of him".

    The army of the king of Dahomey was known and feared for its famous warriors of unequalled courage, called "the king's amazons" by the Europeans.

    During a fight, Alex, panic-stricken, runs away and falls in a deep hole, where Agosi, a young female enemy, has also fallen. She lets Alex heal her leg, before helping him out of their trap and then disappearing into the forest. She then returns to the capital of the kingdom and is given the mission to kill the king. But Agosì, who no longer wants to receive orders or belong to a faction she hasn't chosen, decides to flee and return to the forest to seek her freedom. On the front, the French army finally breaks the Dahomean forces and enter the capital as King Behanzin flees.

    Alex, who has lost part of his innocence decides to return to France stricken by the same fierce will for independence as his friend Agosì's.