'This land and its killing epochs.'

Nadeem Aslam's dazzling new novel takes place in modern-day Afghanistan. A Russian woman named Lara arrives at the house of Marcus Caldwell, an Englishman and widower living in an old perfume factory in the shadow of the Tora Bora mountains. It is possible that Marcus's daughter, Zameen, may have known Lara's brother, a Soviet soldier who disappeared in the area many years previously. But like Marcus's wife, Zameen is dead; a victim of the age in which she was born.

In the days that follow, further people will arrive at the house: David Town and James Palantine, two Americans who have spent much of their adult lives in the area, for their respective reasons; Dunia, a young Afghan teacher; and Casa, a radicalised young man intent on his own path.

The stories and histories that unfold - interweaving and overlapping, and spanning nearly a quarter of a century - tell of the terrible afflictions that have plagued Afghanistan. A work of deepest humanity, The Wasted Vigil offers a timely portrait of this region, of love during war and conflict. At once angry, unflinching and memorably beautiful, it marks Nadeem Aslam as a world writer of major importance.

The wasted vigil - Nadeem Aslam

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Title
The wasted vigil
Author
Nadeem Aslam
format
Hardback
Publisher
Faber & Faber
Language
English
UK Publication Date
20080904

'This land and its killing epochs.'

Nadeem Aslam's dazzling new novel takes place in modern-day Afghanistan. A Russian woman named Lara arrives at the house of Marcus Caldwell, an Englishman and widower living in an old perfume factory in the shadow of the Tora Bora mountains. It is possible that Marcus's daughter, Zameen, may have known Lara's brother, a Soviet soldier who disappeared in the area many years previously. But like Marcus's wife, Zameen is dead; a victim of the age in which she was born.

In the days that follow, further people will arrive at the house: David Town and James Palantine, two Americans who have spent much of their adult lives in the area, for their respective reasons; Dunia, a young Afghan teacher; and Casa, a radicalised young man intent on his own path.

The stories and histories that unfold - interweaving and overlapping, and spanning nearly a quarter of a century - tell of the terrible afflictions that have plagued Afghanistan. A work of deepest humanity, The Wasted Vigil offers a timely portrait of this region, of love during war and conflict. At once angry, unflinching and memorably beautiful, it marks Nadeem Aslam as a world writer of major importance.

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Nadeem Aslam was born in Pakistan and now lives in England. He is the author of four previous novels, most recently The Blind Man's Garden. His work has been longlisted for the Booker Prize, shortlisted for the IMPAC Prize and the DSC Prize for South Asian Literature, and won the Kiriyama and Windham Campbell prizes and the Lannan and Encore Awards. He is a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature.

Type
BOOK
Edition
Hardback original
Keyword Index
Afghanistan - Social conditions - Fiction.
Country of Publication
England
Number of Pages
372

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