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Category Archive for 'Sri Lanka'

Roma Tearne, who grew up in Sri Lanka, crafts a powerful novel, combining the horrifying violence and brutality of brainwashed boy soldiers and opportunistic power seekers with the sometimes lyrical portrayal of nature and the enduring power of love. Now a painter and film-maker in London, as well as a gifted writer, Tearne makes the fraught atmosphere come alive through almost tactile sense impressions, adding depth to this portrait of Sri Lanka, even as she uses the mosquito symbol to show that beauty, when it can be found, always comes with a price.

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Heaven’s Edge is unique–it is not a romance, not a war chronicle, not a religious allegory, not a plea for ecological responsibility, and not science fiction, though it contains elements of all these genres. Marc, a young college graduate from London, has returned to an unnamed island, much like the author’s island of Sri Lanka, on a mission to connect with his father’s memory. Mind-numbing violence, brutally perpetrated by the military to remove any question of free thought and independent activity in the population, is the only constant in the lives of the characters, as Gunesekera explores our need to remain connected to our pasts and the ways in which our futures are outgrowths of our pasts. The graphically described violence further sets into sharp relief themes of personal identity, the desire for beauty, and the need to protect and preserve the natural world.

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