Top positive review
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Lyrical, sparse and more relevant than ever
on 26 August 2002
Most of Among Muslims was first published nearly 10 years ago as an account of Jamie's time travelling in the northern areas of Pakistan. Following the events of Septemeber 11 she has revisted some of the places and people from her first travels.
The book opens with the story of some Pakistani men visiting the small Fife town where she lives on a peace walk. I found the description of the men and their mission extremely moving. In all of the book the writing is wonderful, as you would expect from a poet - Jamie does not overload with detail yet conjures up the sights and sounds (and feelings, smells, bumpiness etc) with ease. But this is not simply a travelogue. As the last section in particular illustrates, it poses questions about the nature of freedom (and in particular, the freedom of women), society, tourism and its impact and the future development of such regions. The contrast of the treatment that Jamie (mostly) received in Pakistan compared with the reaction of her small town to the peace march is also startling.
In all a wonderfull read which manages to pose the reader some big questions without detracting from the lightless and delf touch of the descriptions.