[review] A Good Muslim by Tahmima Anam



Originally published: May 19, 2011
Author: Tahmima Anam
Preceded by: A Golden Age
Page count: 304
Publisher: HarperCollins
Genres: Historical Fiction, Romance novel, Domestic Fiction

I was surprised when I first read the first few pages of this book. I kinda like it more than I intended to be, lol I always do. I read this novel because I need to write a term paper based on one of the novels listed under the course outline for British Literature in the 20th Century. I really picked up this novel with the lowest expectations I ever had (No offence btw, Anam!) because almost all the BritLit's novels I do for this subject were a bit.................dry but, spellbinding if I have to admit. I mean, I learnt a lot about post-war literature this semester.

Reading 'A Good Muslim' is a journey full of mirrors along the path that allows me to literally reflect on my own self. Really.


What is a Good Muslim actually?
What does it mean of being a Good Muslim?

I find it fascinating, how the author ambiguously answered these questions in the form of characterization of the persona(s), ironically all belong in the same family, the Haque. Sohail, Maya and Rehana (their mother) are the depictions of different Muslims. I mean, they are all Muslims - but the way they practice their Islamic values differs. The brother, Sohail - at one point I really thought he had gone astray from the real path ya know. With his jamaah and so. The author did not specifically say he is extremist but welp God knows what. Maya, well, she believes in religion (I guess???) but she can't help herself from voicing out her long lists of sceptical-ity towards Islams and Muslim despite coming from the same root. Rehana, on the other hand, is a representation of the moderate Muslim.

The author really put the liberation for the reader to make the judgment in order for us to come into conclusion. Even for the biggest question that constitutes this novel in the first place. It is refreshing, mind-boggling at the same time too. It also gives insights over what had happened in Bangladesh after their Liberation War - something that is unusual for the reader to focus to - the post-war effects towards people of a nation.

I kinda see Bangladesh from a new perspective too by the way.

I guess, that's it. If you happened to find this novel, well - go and grab it.

5 comments: