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Beauty by Raphael Selbourne

Issue 77 February 2011

Review by Farkhanda Mohiyuddin


Beauty is an endearing tale about a journey of self-discovery and the trials and tribulations of a young Bengali woman. After returning from Bangladesh, Beauty is forced to marry a much older Imam, who wants to use the marriage as a way of entering the UK.

 While the story follows the mundane realities of everyday life; unemployment, troubled relationships, depression, culture differences and so forth, the characters go through a beautiful journey of self discovery which captivates the reader throughout.

 At first I was apprehensive that this book, like many others, would play on the stereotypical clichés of young, Asian girls being suppressed by their traditional, backward parents. However, Selbourne demonstrates a great sensitivity for such matters and is able to deliver a poignant tale; full of hope, empowerment, love and strength.


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