Friday, 14 March 2008


AUTHOR: Tahmima Anam


DATE READ: March 2008

NOTES: A Golden Age is a beautifully written book. The writing is simple and straightforward and creates a vivid picture of life in Bangladesh. It is the story of Rehana, a widow, and how she seeks to protect her children during the Bangladeshi War of Independence in 1971. Her student children want to become active in the war and Rehana reluctantly adds her support. But soon she is pulled more and more into supporting her adopted land of Bangladesh. The war is brutal and is graphically described and the narrative is gripping. The relationships between Rehana and her children, the Major and her neighbours are all very well drawn and perceptive.

Rehana is forced to make some hard choices – but having once lost her children in a custody battle she is determined to do anything within her capability to keep her son and daughter safe.

In the west the Pakistan-Bangladesh conflict is hardly remembered so this novel is a timely reminder of the recent history of the region. A brilliant debut – I do hope she has some more books in the pipeline!

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