Admiring Silence by Abdulrazak Gurnah

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As a successor to his Booker-nominated novel, Paradise, Abdulrazak Gurnah's fifth book, Admiring Silence, presents the despair of being torn from one's roots. Gurnah's unnamed narrator flees to England as a teenager to escape the violent political rule of his native island in Zanzibar. There he lives for nearly twenty years in suburban comfort with an Englishwoman and holds a respectable position teaching at a university. Despite his apparent success, as an immigrant he is caught in cultural limbo, always feeling marginal in British society. The tales he weaves for his English lover and her family of an idyllic past in Africa console him temporarily, but when sanctions are lifted the narrator chooses to leave the family he created in England and return to Zanzibar. What he finds there destroys the image of the childhood paradise he had preserved in his heart-now he can never return home.

About Abdulrazak Gurnah

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Abdulrazak Gurnah was born in Zanzibar in 1948 and teaches at the University of Kent. He is the author of six novels, including Paradise, which was short-listed for the Booker Prize and the Whitbread Award, and By the Sea, a Los Angeles Times Book Prize finalist.
Published January 1, 1996 by Hamilton. 224 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Home seems no longer home, and when his family, angered about his relationship with Emma, turns on him, he goes back, his fables confounded, to England, another place that is no longer home--for by now, Emma has found another man.

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