- Hardcover: 336 pages
- Publisher: Penguin Random House India; First edition (16 October 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0670088749
- ISBN-13: 978-0670088744
- Package Dimensions: 22.8 x 15.2 x 3.6 cm
- Average Customer Review: 13 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #26,074 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Exile: A Memoir Hardcover – 16 Oct 2016
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About the Author
Taslima Nasrin, eminent writer and secular humanist, is known for her powerful writings on women’s rights and unflinching criticism of religious fundamentalism, despite forced banishment and multiple fatwas calling for her death. She has been living in exile since 1994.
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Top customer reviews
It is a rather dry and depressing read to be perfectly honest, and while the first 150 pages were really fast paced, the rest of the book isn’t a page turner. It is more glum and sedate mainly filled with diary style entries of her anguish and disbelief at the way she was being treated.
She starts off with how she landed in India, all high hopes and happiness, filled with expectation at being welcomed back and at how Kolkata would feel again. One of her books gets translated into Telugu and the organisers ask her to come to Hyderabad for the event. After many refusals she finally accepts and this is what leads to the whole disaster. A mob rushes in, threats of riots ensue and Nasrin, the centre figure in all of this, is blamed for pointing out what she believes are the negatives in Islam despite not having even mentioned the word Islam or Religion in her speech there.
Now none of these are spoilers because these were largely publicised events. Right from segments by Barkha Dutt and other supposedly supportive journalists to everyone completely ignoring her, these events surprise her and throw her under the bus till she finally succumbs and leaves the country which, she still cannot believe that people want of her.
My opinion on this really doesn’t matter since it isn’t a novel, it is an autobiography. But I will tell you what to expect from this book. There is nothing riveting or earth shattering about it. No revelations or information that was previously unknown. These are simply the jottings of a woman who is under a tremendous amount of pressure and stress after being denied everything she loves. Naturally, diary entries like this will not be a pleasure to read, they will be repetitive and desolate, with recurring thoughts and themes mentioned in every entry.
This book will leave you a little touchy, as I was last night getting angry at every news article I came across and at everything people told me. So if you are easily affected please take note of that. On the one side there are no trigger warnings to be mentioned so you have nothing to worry about on that front. Whether you like her at the end of this or hate her at the end of this, you will be astounded at how strongly she stands by her beliefs and that made this a really interesting read.
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