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Crossbones [Kindle Edition]

Nuruddin Farah
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

A dozen years after his last visit, Jeebleh returns to his beloved Mogadiscio to see old friends. He is accompanied by his son-in-law, Malik, a journalist intent on covering the region's ongoing turmoil. What greets them at first is not the chaos Jeebleh remembers, however, but an eerie calm enforced by ubiquitous white-robed figures bearing whips.

Meanwhile, Malik's brother, Ahl, has arrived in Puntland, the region notorious as a pirates' base. Ahl is searching for his stepson, Taxliil, who has vanished from Minneapolis, apparently recruited by an imam allied to Somalia's rising religious insurgency. The brothers' efforts draw them closer to Taxliil and deeper into the fabric of the country, even as Somalis brace themselves for an Ethiopian invasion. Jeebleh leaves Mogadiscio only a few hours before the borders are breached and raids descend from land and sea. As the uneasy quiet shatters and the city turns into a battle zone, the brothers experience firsthand the derailments of war.

Completing the trilogy that began with Links and Knots, Crossbones is a fascinating look at individuals caught in the maw of zealotry, profiteering, and political conflict, by one of our most highly acclaimed international writers.

About the Author

NURUDDIN FARAH's works include three trilogies, among them Variations on the Theme of an African Dictatorship and Blood in the Sun; plays; and a non-fiction book, Yesterday, Tomorrow. He lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota and Cape Town, South Africa.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 612 KB
  • Print Length: 401 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0143122533
  • Publisher: Granta Books (5 July 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0081S7AMO
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #311,164 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gripping human account of Somalia 29 July 2013
This is a ravaging and yet beautiful book. Nuruddin Farah begins with a deep rich descriptive prose which is worth taking the time needed to fully appreciate. He then moves into faster narrative which sets out the human cry, the struggle to exist in social conflict where imams, warlords, invaders and the omnipotent USA vie for control, with indifference to any human ethic.

Farah also sets the pressing issue of Somalian sea piracy in context, arguing its root cause in the global exploitation of Somalia's fish stock, and claiming that the beneficiaries are not the pirates themselves, but financiers in the developed world.

For the ordinary person negotiating such social disruption, compromise is often unavoidable and outcomes terrible. But the human spirit, however thwarted, however distorted, dimmed and weakened, prevails. People can still care, can remain committed to each other, can show hospitality and generosity. Humanity can and does transcend its own social artefact.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's piracy, but not as we know it 12 Oct 2012
High-octane, high-seas shanties; eye-patches and cutlasses; bounties and buccaneers: all are conspicuous by their absence in Crossbones, Nuruddin Farah's gruelling yet gripping account of life in modern-day Somalia - it's piracy, but not as we know it.
Farah is ideally placed to examine the extraordinary strife afflicting his homeland, which he talks about in an excellent recent Guardian interview. 'Crossbones' - its piratical reference deployed with a delicious hint of irony - is the third and final book of his latest trilogy, though it stands alone. Where 'Links' (2006) explored the post-US invasion rise of Mogadishu's clan warlords, and 'Knots' (2007) concentrated on its virtual takeover by the hardline Islamist group Shaabab, 'Crossbones' is set in the vacuum of power that followed: Ethiopia is preparing to invade, Shaabab are scurrying for cover, and a murderous lawlessness reigns. 'Let's face it,' explains one of a seemingly limitless number of shady go-betweens, 'I, too, like so many others, profited from the turmoil. Turbulence upsets things, sends the dregs to the top. We are enjoying the turmoil and are unfettered by tax laws, a parliament issuing decrees, a dictator passing edicts, a government declaring draconian measures: the ideal situation for growth of capital.'
'Crossbones' charts the respective journeys of Jeebleh, his son-in-law Malik, and Malik's brother, Ahl, all American citizens, who return to their homeland ostensibly in order to search for Ahl's adopted son Taxliil, who has disappeared along with a group of other young Somali-American men from their homes in Minnesota, said to have been recruited by Shaabab with the lure of martyrdom.
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5.0 out of 5 stars thrilling 17 Feb 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
this was by far the best book i have ever read before. indeed it was exceedingly engaging which made think of this rather positive verdict of the book. i would like to personally thank mr farah as he made me change my whole opinion on reading.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful story 20 Aug 2012
By Abdul
Format:Kindle Edition
Love it every bit of it. It's one of those stories that you don't get bord. Nurdin Farah is a world-class write, and this book is further dominatration why he's so.
The book is based on the current stories of Somalia and would strongly recommend to anyone who wants to read a good story.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Stranger than Fiction 11 Aug 2012
By Jon P
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Those who are intrigued as to how society functions in a state that has been without a central government and in a state of warfare for more than 20 years will no doubt find this book informative. Farah ably conveys the paranoia and desperation of the long-suffering people of Mogadishu preparing for another bout of blood-letting, as the 2010 conflict with Ethiopia draws closer. Farah also sheds much-needed light on the issue of Somali piracy, showing how it started out as a defensive measure against foreign fleets seeking to take advantage of Somalia's lack of governance and fishing in its waters, depriving local fishermen of their livelihood. That said however, one wonders why Farah did not opt to write a work of non-fiction, for the plot and characters seem to be little more than a sideline to this overview. The prose is often lumpen, largely because Farah chooses to narrate much of the history and politics of Somalia through the conversations of his characters, making the dialogue unnatural and clumsy. The characters seem to be little more than vehicles for explaining the social and political context. There is little to distinguish the main protagonists from one another and all are drawn from a particular strand of Somali society - literate, secular and Westernized. The few characters that fall outside of this category are presented as one-dimensional villains. All in all, an immensely disappointing work of fiction but probably worth a look if East African current affairs interest you.
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