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This review is from: Maps for Lost Lovers (Paperback)
I first bought this in the hard back edition and lent it to someone who took so long to read it I had to buy a paperback copy because I wanted to read it again and have now read it three times. Maps for Lost Lovers is a beautifuly written book - the prose is lyrical, almost poetical - and yet Nadeem Aslam is writing uncompromisingly, even brutally, about difficult subjects.
The story, set in a nameless northern town which the residents from the sub-continent call the 'desert of loneliness', covers a year in the lives of the community since the disappearance of lovers Jugnu and Chanda.
There is a big cast of characters but the two main ones are the modern, 'liberated' Shamas and Kaukab his very conservative, religious wife. This complex, many layered novel provides a fascinating glimpse into what is often perceived as a closed community. It is a brave book, opening up a great many issues of relgion, race, bigotry, cultural differences and the difficulties for immigrants to be accepted and to accept.
Reviewed by Mary Smith author of No More Mulberries