King Peggy by Peggielene Bartels
An American Secretary, Her Royal Destiny, and the Inspiring Story of How She Changed an African Village

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Synopsis

The charming real-life fairy tale of an American secretary who discovers she has been chosen king of an impoverished fishing village on the west coast of Africa. King Peggy has the sweetness and quirkiness of The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series and the hopeful sense of possibility of Half the Sky.
 
King Peggy chronicles the astonishing journey of an American secretary who suddenly finds herself king to a town of 7,000 souls on Ghana's central coast, half a world away. Upon arriving for her crowning ceremony in beautiful Otuam, she discovers the dire reality: there's no running water, no doctor, and no high school, and many of the village elders are stealing the town's funds. To make matters worse, her uncle (the late king) sits in a morgue awaiting a proper funeral in the royal palace, which is in ruins. The longer she waits to bury him, the more she risks incurring the wrath of her ancestors. Peggy's first two years as king of Otuam unfold in a way that is stranger than fiction. In the end, a deeply traditional African town has been uplifted by the ambitions of its headstrong, decidedly modern female king. And in changing Otuam, Peggy is herself transformed, from an ordinary secretary to the heart and hope of her community.
 

About Peggielene Bartels

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PEGGIELENE BARTELS was born in Ghana in 1953 and moved to Washington, DC, in her early twenties to work at Ghana's embassy. She became an American citizen in 1997. In 2008, she was chosen to be king of Otuam, a Ghanaian village of 7,000 people on the west coast of Africa. She lives in Silver Spring, Maryland, still works at the embassy, and spends several weeks each year in Ghana. ELEANOR HERMAN is the author of three books of women's history, including the New York Times bestseller Sex with Kings and Sex with the Queen. Her profile of Peggy was a cover story for the Washington Post Magazine. She lives in McLean, Virginia.
 
Published February 21, 2012 by Anchor. 354 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History. Non-fiction

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Bartels was working as a secretary in the Ghanaian Embassy when she received a phone call that would change her life. The king of Otuam, a small coastal town of 7,000 people, had passed away, and the tribal elders had elected her as his replacement.

Feb 07 2012 | Read Full Review of King Peggy: An American Secre...

BookPage

Full of pathos, humor and insight into a world where poverty mingles with hope and happiness, King Peggy is an inspiration and proof positive that when it comes to challenging roles for women, “We Can Do It!”.

Jul 13 2014 | Read Full Review of King Peggy: An American Secre...

BookPage

Full of pathos, humor and insight into a world where poverty mingles with hope and happiness, King Peggy is an inspiration and proof positive that when it comes to challenging roles for women, “We Can Do It!”

Feb 21 2012 | Read Full Review of King Peggy: An American Secre...

Macleans

Then the phone rang one morning at 4 a.m. and a relative informed Peggy she had been chosen to be the “lady king” of her Ghanaian village, Otaum.

Mar 01 2012 | Read Full Review of King Peggy: An American Secre...

Palatine Public Library

Peggy Bartels, a longtime secretary at the Ghanaian embassy in Washington, D.C., got a call from home in 2008.

Mar 27 2012 | Read Full Review of King Peggy: An American Secre...

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