Where The Air Is Sweet

Tasneem Jamal. HarperCollins Canada, $22.99 trade paper (366p) ISBN 978-1-44340-817-2
"It's a beautiful feeling to have power." This line uttered gently in a driving lesson early on in Jamal's debut novel about family and love hints at another darker theme — the unbreakable and destructive force of power. In 1921, 20-year old Raju leaves his hometown of Malia, India and embarks on a journey that leads him to Mbarara, Uganda, which becomes home to three generations of his family. After 50 years in Uganda, however, life for Raju's family takes a turn for the worse when dictator General Idi Amin begins voicing his hatred for Asians and soon gives Asian non-Ugandan citizens 90 days to leave Uganda for good. Jamal's narrative explores the 1972 expulsion of 80,000 Asians from Uganda from the perspective of this family. As Raju and his family struggle to understand what is happening with the only country they truly know and love, they come up with a plan to leave Uganda and start a new life in Canada. Prior to writing this novel, Jamal spent more than a decade working as an editor for The Globe and Mail and the National Post, and she describes the expulsion in a journalistic style that forms a powerful backdrop for the story. (June) Agent: Dean Cooke, The Cooke Agency The
Reviewed on: 06/09/2014
Release date: 06/01/2014
Ebook - 376 pages - 978-1-4434-0819-6
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