April 8, 2014 | By Roger Thurow

Roger Thurow's Book, The Last Hunger Season, Recommended by Bill and Melinda Gates

Roger Thurow’s book, The Last Hunger Season, was picked by Bill and Melinda Gates as one of 10 recommended books. According to Melinda Gates, Roger "movingly chronicles the lives of four Kenyan farmers as they struggle to support their families through the wanjala, Swahili for “hunger season.” This book is both about the importance of investing in Africa’s smallholder farmers and a compelling blueprint for doing it effectively. Thurow shows how, together, we can make this wanjala the last one." 

Here is the full list of books recommended by Bill and Melinda Gates:

  • The Better Angels of Our Nature by Steven Pinker
  • Getting Better by Charles Kenny
  • Behind the Beautiful Forevers by Katherine Boo
  • The Man Who Fed the World by Leon Hesser
  • Energy Myths and Realities by Vaclav Smil
  • The Last Hunger Season by Roger Thurow
  • However Long the Night by Aimee Molloy
  • In the Company of the Poor by Paul Farmer and Gustavo Gutierrez
  • Change by Design by Tim Brown
  • Mighty Be Our Powers by Leymah Gbowee


The Global Food and Agriculture Program aims to inform the development of US policy on global agricultural development and food security by raising awareness and providing resources, information, and policy analysis to the US Administration, Congress, and interested experts and organizations.

The Global Food and Agriculture Program is housed within the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, an independent, nonpartisan organization that provides insight – and influences the public discourse – on critical global issues. The Council on Global Affairs convenes leading global voices and conducts independent research to bring clarity and offer solutions to challenges and opportunities across the globe. The Council is committed to engaging the public and raising global awareness of issues that transcend borders and transform how people, business, and governments engage the world.

Support for the Global Food and Agriculture Program is generously provided by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.


1,000 Days Blog, 1,000 Days

Africa Can End Poverty, World Bank

Agrilinks Blog

Bread Blog, Bread for the World

Can We Feed the World Blog, Agriculture for Impact

Concern Blogs, Concern Worldwide

Institute Insights, Bread for the World Institute

End Poverty in South Asia, World Bank

Global Development Blog, Center for Global Development

The Global Food Banking Network

Harvest 2050, Global Harvest Initiative

The Hunger and Undernutrition Blog, Humanitas Global Development

International Food Policy Research Institute News, IFPRI

International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center Blog, CIMMYT

ONE Blog, ONE Campaign

One Acre Fund Blog, One Acre Fund

Overseas Development Institute Blog, Overseas Development Institute

Oxfam America Blog, Oxfam America

Preventing Postharvest Loss, ADM Institute

Sense & Sustainability Blog, Sense & Sustainability

WFP USA Blog, World Food Program USA