cover image The Bones of Grace

The Bones of Grace

Tahmima Anam. Harper, $25.99 (416p) ISBN 978-0-06-147894-9

Anam’s final installment in her Bengal trilogy (after A Golden Age and The Good Muslim) follows the life of Zubaida Haque, a young, wealthy Bangladeshi woman who falls for Elijah in Boston, shortly before her departure for an archeological dig in Pakistan. But when the dig is abruptly shortened before the archeologists uncover the entire skeleton of “the walking whale,” Zubaida returns to her adopted parents in Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, and agrees to marry her best friend from childhood, Rashid. Her restlessness leads her to help a British filmmaker in Chittagong with a documentary showing the dismantling of a ship, and she is surprised to note that a beautiful, intact piano is still aboard. Zubaida calls Elijah and asks him to visit her, appealing to his love of music to entice him to come see the piano. The time Zubaida spends with Elijah is magical and illuminating for her, and she is forced to make some very difficult personal choices. In having Zubaida come to terms with her origins and her own contentment, Anam captures two very different cultures in an introspective character study that will mesmerize readers from the very first page. (June)