In 1959, a missionary named Nathan Price transports his wife and four daughters to a remote village in the Belgian Congo to convert the natives. The family is met with hostility from the locals, particularly a vengeful witch doctor. They also face bands of desperate rebels, dangerous wildlife, and the inevitable petty inconveniences a hyper-conventional Midwestern family might expect to face in an alien land. After tragedy strikes, the family leaves the Congo and Kingsolver details the subsequent fates of each of the female members, each narrating in her own distinctive voice. Besides being a vivid novel about family and a tour de force of characterization, THE POISONWOOD BIBLE is also a vehicle for Kingsolver's ideas about the Congo's disastrous history and America's role in it.