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The Saviour Fish: Life and Death on Africa's Greatest Lake With Mark Weston

My guest today is Mark Weston. Mark was sent to live on a remote island in the Tanzanian half of Lake Victoria where he found a community grappling with one of the world's great unknown environmental crises. In his new book, The Saviour Fish: Life and Death on Africa’s Greatest Lake he tells the story of this environmental catastrophe through the experiences of the people on Ukerewe Island. He lived on the island for two years and was able to create long lasting friendships and gain trust of the community. As Mark says, the book is not all doom and gloom about the bad state of the fishing industry. The book is also about people, their religion and beliefs and rural island life. Mark and his wife became part of the community and formed lifelong friendships. Mark states it was a privilege to get to know these people and their way of life.

I am happy to announce that The Saviour Fish was one of the Daily Telegraph's and Wanderlust Magazine's travel books of the year for 2022.

In today’s episode, Mark first describes a bit about his experiences with the people and the island. Then we get into the environmental crisis about the Nile perch also known as the saviour fish of Lake Victoria, how the crisis came to be and what is going on now. Mark was able to go out with a friend who also happens to be an illegal fisherman and tells us a small portion of his experience going fishing. We end the interview on a lighter note discussing of all things, banana beer. So enjoy the show and enjoy the book. The Saviour Fish is available through John Hunt publishing, Amazon, and hopefully your local bookshop. The publishers link to the book is in my show notes along with some island photos and more information about Mark. I hope you enjoy our conversation and the book as much as I did!

About the Author Mark Weston

Mark Weston has written about and broadcast on Africa for BBC Radio 4, Slate, the Royal African Society, South Africa's Mail & Guardian, and Roads & Kingdoms. He is the author of the West Africa travelogue The Ringtone and the Drum and the satirical novel African Beauty, and his research on global issues including public health, access to justice, education and demography has been published in some of the world's leading academic journals. He lives in London, UK.

About the Publisher

John Hunt Publishing is an independent publisher with sales teams worldwide welcoming new authors and unsolicited manuscript submissions. For our authors, we provide an automated production system, forums, a marketing database with over 40,000 contacts and other online tools to produce and market each book. We partner with our authors on marketing, reaching all the traditional bookstore markets for print books, worldwide, and all online retailers.

Music downloaded from and is titled Ngoni Nights by Kora Kollective.

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Oct 26, 2023
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

Really great interview. Very informative thank you!

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