A Beautiful Lie by Irfan Master

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Synopsis

An extraordinarily rich debut novel, set in India in 1947 at the time of Partition. Although the backdrop is this key event in Indian history, the novel is even more far-reaching, touching on the importance of tolerance, love and family. The main character is Bilal, a boy determined to protect his dying father from the news of Partition - news that he knows will break his father's heart. With great spirit and determination, and with the help of his good friends, Bilal persuades others to collude with him in this deception, even printing false pages of the local newspaper to hide the ravages of unrest from his father. All that Bilal wants is for his father to die in peace. But that means Bilal has a very complicated relationship with the truth...
 

About Irfan Master

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This is Irfan Master's first novel and has been shortlisted for the Waterstone's Children's Book Prize. Irfan is project manager of Reading the Game at the National Literacy Trust. His family is from Gujarat, where the novel is set. Irfan lives in London, SE5.
 
Published January 4, 2011 by Bloomsbury Childrens. 321 pages
Genres: Young Adult, Children's Books, Literature & Fiction, War. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for A Beautiful Lie

Kirkus Reviews

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It’s a done deal—partition will soon divide India into two countries mainly along religious lines, India for Hindus and Sikhs, Pakistan for Muslims—but Bilal’s dying father remains serenely confident that his beloved India will take another path and Bilal, 13, can’t bear for him to die disillusio...

Jul 18 2012 | Read Full Review of A Beautiful Lie

The Guardian

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Bilal cleverly enlists his friends as an early-warning system, allowing him time to head visitors off at the pass, inventing ever more complex reasons why his father can't see them.

Mar 19 2011 | Read Full Review of A Beautiful Lie

Publishers Weekly

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In this highly charged and poignant debut novel set in 1947, first published in the U.K., 13-year-old narrator Bilal works hard to conceal the impending partition of India, which resulted in the creation of Pakistan, to protect his dying father and give him peace.

Aug 20 2012 | Read Full Review of A Beautiful Lie

The Bookbag

Summary: Bilal's father is already dying, but Bilal at least wants to spare him a broken heart.

Dec 30 2010 | Read Full Review of A Beautiful Lie

City Book Review

He decides the kindest gift he can give his father is the “beautiful lie” of the title, and he enlists his friends to help keep his father from learning the truth.

Dec 19 2012 | Read Full Review of A Beautiful Lie

DNA

The main character is Bilal, a boy determined to protect his dying father from the news of Partition, which he knows will break his father’s heart and hasten his impending death.

Mar 27 2011 | Read Full Review of A Beautiful Lie

BookRack

As the story progresses, there are many strong characters along the way, who win the admiration of the readers – Bilal’s wise father – a voracious reader, the teacher Mr. Mukherjee, the Doctorji and all of Bilal’s friends.

May 20 2011 | Read Full Review of A Beautiful Lie

The Overflowing Library

The book follows the story of a young boy and his dying father and the lengths the boy goes to to keep events of the partition of India from his father as he knows it will break his father's heart.

Jan 14 2011 | Read Full Review of A Beautiful Lie

Youth Services Book Review

What did you like about the book?: The language in the book is lovely, vividly portraying India and the tension of its people during the period before Partition.

Nov 20 2012 | Read Full Review of A Beautiful Lie

Artswrap

The main character, Bilal, tries to protect his dying father from the news of the partition- which would break his father's heart.

| Read Full Review of A Beautiful Lie

CCB La Valla Library

Bilal is a young boy forced to care for his dying father who hates the idea of India being torn apart and longs for the traditions of India.

Mar 10 2012 | Read Full Review of A Beautiful Lie

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