I wouldn’t exactly use the work regret but lately I have been thinking it would be nice to be participating in a few less reading challenges. I can understand now the seasoned bloggers sentiment of cutting back, as tempting as it is right now when the delights on offer for next year are starting to be posted.
I lost our children today
Set during the Bangladeshi war of independance of 1971, this is a touching and educational story which gathers momentum throughout. By the end I couldn’t put it down.
Rehana has been widowed at a young age and has experienced plenty of personal heartbreak and struggle since. We join her with her two teenage children and friends at a party in their home in East Pakistan in 1971. It is the eve of the beginning of the struggle for independance from West Pakistan for the country that is to become Bangladesh.
Most of the story is about this struggle and the effects on Rehana, her children and their community. It is sensitively told from the point of view of Rehana and we understand the emotional toll as well as the constant physical threat for those choosing to resist the Pakistan army.
No, there had never been any other time; their lives were populated by Lenin and Castro and Mujib and Anwar Sadaat; there was only this time, this life, this fraught and crowded era, to which they were bound without choice, without knowledge, only their passions, their loves to lead and sustain them.
This is a story of war with it’s hope and inevitable sacrifice. Above all, it is a story of a mother’s love and what she will do to keep her children safe.
A Golden Age won the Commonwealth Writer’s prize for Overall best first book in 2008. It would make a wonderful choice for the Women Unbound challenge, which I haven’t signed up for yet but probably won’t be able to resist.