Barbara Kingsolver's The Poisonwood Bible is the chronicle of a missionary family in the Congo, and the action is narrated by five members of the Price family, each with a distinct perspective on the experience. In this dense and lyrical novel, Barbara Kingsolver explores a clash of cultures, and the ethnocentrism that dooms the mission, wreaking havoc on the family. Nathan, the father, scorns local advice regarding planting, and is anguished when his crops are flooded. Leah Price soon assimilates into Kilanga culture, later marrying a village man. When political tensions make the region unsafe for Europeans and Americans, many leave, but Nathan insists on remaining in the village. Calamities ensue as his wife Oleanna and one of his children nearly perish from malaria, Ruth May dies of snakebite, and finally, Oleanna abandons the mission. The final portion of Kingsolver's novel reflects on the meaning of the family’s sojourn in Africa, following the destinies of all the characters. High school readers will explore cultural relativism, and appreciate the skillful alternation of narrative voices.