The Gardens of Light by Amin Maalouf
A Novel (Emerging Voices)

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The Gardens of Light tells the life story of Mani, painter, doctor, and prophet born in Mesopotamia - modern day Iraq - in the early third century of the Christian era. He advocated "The Gospel of Light" - a religious system which was a mixture of Gnostic Christian beliefs, ancient Persian Zoroastrianism, Buddhism and some pagan elements. This came to be known as Manichaeism and attracted vast numbers of disciples. The mystic exercised a powerful attraction over his disciples - rulers and scholars, itinerant merchants, shippers, baptists and sages who inhabited the shores of the Tigris - and was hated by the Magi, the high priests of Zoroastrianism who felt threatened and eventually had him imprisoned, tortured and killed in 276 AD. Amin Maalouf brings life and color to the character and times of Mani. In the pages of The Gardens of Light, Mani's cry for tolerance can be heard echoing across the centuries of our times. Amin Maalouf won the Prix Goncourt in 1993 for his novel The Rock of Tanios. He is the author of five highly acclaimed novels including Samarkand which was also published by Interlink.

About Amin Maalouf

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Amin Maalouf is an eminent novelist, whose books include "The Rock of Tanios," which won the 1993 Goncourt Prize, France's most prestigious literary award. He was formerly director of the leading Beirut newspaper "an-Nahar" and editor of "Jeune Afrique,
Published November 1, 1996 by Quartet Books. 256 pages
Genres: History, Education & Reference, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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The narrative is intermittently discursive, but Maalouf’s sympathetic renderings of Mani’s tribulations in his Persian homeland and in India, climaxing with his betrayal by the successor of an indulgent monarch, are suffused with a (nicely translated) dramatic lyricism that may remind many reader...

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Publishers Weekly

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An absorbing historical novel and a compelling parable for our time, Lebanese writer Maalouf's (Samarkand) exotic tale recreates the life of Mani (216-274 C.E.), the Persian mystic who founded the Manichaean religion and was eventually executed on the grounds of heresy.

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ForeWord Reviews

In his fifth highly acclaimed novel, The Gardens of Light, Amin Maalouf graces his readers with beauty and mysticism.

Dec 16 1998 | Read Full Review of The Gardens of Light: A Novel...

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