This is a clever exercise through which readers are exposed to different narrative voices and the notion of what a seminal role memory plays in life, colouring and influencing our present reality to a greater or lesser degree. I only know that for a long time nothing happened, and then everything did. The Prophet lived in a time of war, when there were many destitute widows and orphans, and so polygamy was considered an act of charity. If I clambered onto the chair, I might be able to catch a glimpse of the ocean down in the hollow of the town's pit. She's been through a lot in her seventy-something years, so it seems sensible that she'd want to write an autobiography. The shoots of their lives grow apart and interlace again. Alice sounded very useful, if she's real I'd like to meet her and attend her classes.
For the first time, Malak understands the meaning of passion, but she's now caught between two men - neither of who know of the other. I don't know how he'll react, so I don't know how this story is going to end, and that is contributing to this melancholy I can't shake. This book is the epitome of the book that once started can't be put down. The novel is presented as an extension of the writing classes that Rakel drags Malak to. But everything changes when Malak steps into a lift one day. She and the emotionally and physically absent Taj live past each other, their only real connection a shared sense of acute loss.
I'm trying not to be a clumsy narrator, Amal, but I don't know where to begin. When he proposes, Malak finds she cannot resist temptation, and their union becomes the driving catalyst for change in her life. The cast is fantastic - the protagonist is a completely real person, with a thought life, irritations, a brilliant sense of humour, and lots of ridiculous hang-ups. The main difference here — and one which is fundamental to this plot - is that one of these sisters has been missing for over a decade, having vanished mysteriously during an overnight camping trip with her adoring father. I don't think I fully understood before what people meant when they said they wished that they could read a book or watch a film for the first time again - now I do. A Novel of Wit and Skill Not A Fairy-tale is the brilliant debut novel by the South African writer Shaida Kazie Ali.
Part-eulogy, part-memoir, Lessons in Husbandry is leavened with flashes of irony and dashes of intrigue. I just love it when something unexpected hits me. Again, it is a story about two dissimilar Muslim sisters from Cape Town. But everything changes when Malak steps into a lift one day. She is wearing a long sombre dress with a trailing purple scarf.
But Shaida Kazie Ali's book caught me completely off guard. Afraid of severing her last ties to her sister, Malak simply cannot leave Taj, but she is also unable to picture a future without Darya in it. But everything changes when Malak steps into a lift one day. Shaida Kazie Ali writes with a delicate poetic touch that tempers sorrow with humour. And I need to do some sexual experimenting first. It is that delightful thing - a complex, intricately crafted tale whose wholeness you grasp fully only as you finish the last page. In the chapters on the sisters, we see apartheid's intimate impact in the family, where being light-skinned is favoured, but Ali shows us that being favoured by an unjust system is a form of entrapment, and it is the dark-skinned sister who first finds her way to independence and happiness.
She discovers that she isn't made only of grief for her brilliant sister, and a risky double life with another man ensues. In Not A Fairy-tale, clever women are the heroines, not the villains of the stories. Every day bears the absence of her sister. It is a wonderful mix of a gripping story with dark and sometimes laugh-out-loud humour and poetic prose and deep emotion, with a very unusual insight into the world of a Muslim woman in South Africa. The second part of the novel recounts Salena's story, and the fairytales in this section convey both dizzying danger and the possibility of making your own happy ending.
I every now and then kept checking its back cover hoping I read its genre wrong, for the times I checked, to my dissapointment, everything remained the same. Lessons in Husbandry, by Shaida Kazie Ali. It seems that either love fades or was never there to begin with. Amal, however, keeps them waiting. So that's why I'm here at my favourite coffee haunt in Cape Town, watching the sun spill over the pages as I read through my manuscript and wait for my husband to join me. The cast is fantastic - the protagonist is a completely real person, with a thought life, irritations, a brilliant sense of humour, and lots of ridiculous hang-ups. It is a novel that celebrates sex, love and human connection, and decries the chasms that still exist between people, a novel that promises to be good fun, and truly compelling.
The novel is simultaneously deliciously dark and deeply moving. You'll be horrified to hear that I still wear my hair in a teacher-bun, or a single plait down my back. She spends her life running a bakery with her business partner, friend and neighbour Rakel. Every plot fold and twist, every action of every character, is so skilfully put into place, that the book reads like a river, and I want to go back to the first trickle and be unaware of the river again! New fiction based on polygamous scenarios includes Lessons in Husbandry, the second novel by South African author Shaida Kazie Ali, and The Ruins of Us, the debut novel by Keija Parssinen. Although Abdullah has not always been faithful, Rosalie discovers his second wife only by accident, triggering a crisis in their relationship. I will definitely be reading Shaida's first b I haven't read many South African fiction authors but I'm glad I picked Lessons in Husbandry up. For the obvious reasons, it was like saying goodbye to a bestfriend and parting after bonding is never a good thing.