The Peace Corpse: Misadventures in Love and Africa

I’ve wanted to be a writer since I was 16. I know, me and everyone else, right? But I never had enough faith in my abilities, so I did the ‘sensible’ thing and studied math and science in school.

After college I joined the Peace Corps and found myself shipped off to Tanzania as a science teacher. I had already made up my mind before I even set foot in Africa to write a novel based on my experiences, and during my service as a Volunteer I spent a good amount of my spare time writing.

My original idea was that I would appear as a minor character in a novel centered around the experiences of a fictionalized Volunteer, but after my life took an unexpected turn around halfway through my first year of service, I decided to write the book as a memoir instead. Because to be perfectly honest, if I were to describe things that actually happened to me in a work of fiction, people would probably think they were just poor plotting by a novice writer.

Regardless, if you decide to read my book I sincerely hope you enjoy it, and if nothing else it should give you a chuckle or two.

Customer reviews

What a great and funny read!
“I enjoyed and laughed at the predicaments he continually got himself into. Andy is also a master of the F bomb. You will also learn some useful Swahili terms and a few not so useful ones. I’ll keep repeating that this is a funny read.”

Great Insight into Another Culture!
“This book is an accurate and entertaining picture of what it’s like for an American to be plunged into a foreign culture… something most of us have never done. As one reviewer said, the author is so self-deprecating and honest, you can’t help but identifying with him in the process! Highly recommended!”

I didn’t know The Peace Corps could be funny
“Unlike some of the memoirs that deals with heavy and depressing issues, this author covered something that many have not. To my knowledge, I haven’t heard of anyone who got a good laugh from reading about The Peace Corps. Well, I did reading this.”

Unexpectedly Entertaining
“For me, the sense of humor of the writer was present in every page, which I dearly appreciated. This may not be the work of a literary genius, but all in all, his adventures or his misadventures as he called them were entertaining to read.”

An entertaining read!
“Andy’s story is also a coming of age story about a young man who lived a fairly sheltered life in rural Montana who finds himself facing situations he had no preparation for. He evolves from a rather flippant, self-centered young man into a young man who really did have a positive impact on his students and the school where he was teaching.”

Honest and real – one man’s experience in the Peace Corp
“Honest, interesting, educational and entertaining. Written in a familiar conversational style. Although the book was largely written after his “tour” was over, original emails that were sent to friends and family at the time pepper the book to lend authenticity along with amusing quotes from the author and others he met on his journey.”

A humorous trip through Africa with a love-sick volunteer! Priceless!
“Andy Christofferson’s unfiltered, self-deprecating memoir of the time he spent in Tanzania is a playful and unpredictable romp around eastern Africa. He finds himself at love’s mercy and then rationalizes hilarious solutions to act on his emotions. Aside from the love story, the memoir finds Andy in all sorts of precarious situations where he unknowingly puts himself in grave danger. These situations are that much more enjoyable for the reader given Andy’s academic brilliance juxtaposed against his troubles with consequential forethought. In the end, you can’t help but love the love-sick Andy, and you can’t help but love his story. I recommend it.”

Book description

Imagine a white, 22-year-old college kid from Montana volunteering to serve in the Peace Corps with the intention of bringing knowledge and friendship to the developing world. That was me, along with the others who served with me in Tanzania for two years. At least, that was the idea.

I have to admit that I failed to fit the stereotype. The “wide-eyed, self-righteous do-gooder serving the noble cause”. See, I may very well be the only Peace Corps Volunteer in the history of the organization to sincerely, foolishly, and romantically propose marriage to a local girl, only to have her say no. Which is not only funny but cruel, considering that to the majority of Tanzanians, an American kid like me is their golden ticket to a better life.

Of course, that wasn’t all I did. I taught advanced chemistry at an all-girls school, kayaked my way into Zimbabwe, and learned just how little water a human being can survive on. I also spent a good chunk of time having outdoor adventures around East Africa. In my defense, I did accomplish a few useful things. My time in Peace Corps wasn’t a complete waste, so I decided to share my journey.

My goal with this book is to give a very raw, straightforward, analytical – but also humorous – picture of both what a typical Peace Corps experience is like, as well as offer some insight into the current conditions of life in East Africa. For kids who are thinking of joining the Peace Corps, laugh and learn. For other readers? Just laugh, at me or with me. It sure is better than crying about it.

Author interviews

Keystrokes & Word Counts:
Book Review – The Peace Corpse: Misadventures in Love and Africa
with MaryBeth

Today’s Q. & A. is something a little different for me, a memoir! It’s about author Andy Christofferson’s two year journey in Tanzania, Africa volunteering with the Peace Corps.

Kindle Author Interview: Andy Christofferson
with David Wiseheart

Andy Christofferson, author of The Peace Corpse, discusses his book, his journey as a writer, and self-publishing on Kindle.

Safireblade: Interview with Andy Christofferson
with safireblade

 I appreciate Andy’s willingness to submit to my interview questions.  He is a good author, a great guy, and someone I am proud to call a friend.

For sample chapters, click here


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