Switches in point-of-view to introduce the various characters slowed down the beginning a little bit. And of course, three scenarios also necessitated three endings. (Fewer than Tolkien!) But once I knew these women, both American and African, I was committed to seeing their journey through. A couple plot elements seemed unlikely from an African perspective, but the typical reader would consider me a real nit-picker to bring them up. (Okay. I know. I AM a nit-picker.) Liggett’s American visitors were more conscious of dirt and native dress than I am, but that may be because familiarity makes them less noticeable.
Calling Mamelodi a “village” is probably intended to convey the idea of a supportive community, but I suspect most readers visualize a smaller, more rural setting than the sprawling, peri-urban community of nearly a million people that is Mamelodi outside Pretoria. But in the end, "Mamelodi" is a just name. This story could have taken place anywhere in South Africa, urban or rural.
Beaded Hope is about women helping women—African women helping each other and reaching out with grace to their clueless American visitors. The Americans go home changed, and I hope readers will be too.