57 pages 1 hour read

Abdulrazak Gurnah


Fiction | Novel | Adult | Published in 2020

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Part 4, Chapters 13-15

Chapter Summaries & Analyses

Part 4, Chapter 13 Summary

Hamza discovers that living with Asha and Khalifa is not so difficult, although he spends most of his time avoiding Asha. He meets with his boss and the carpenter as they plan out the things they want to make. The merchant’s business is picking up as the country continues to recover from war and the British-built infrastructure. He wants to build a new workshop that will create a lot of school infrastructure chairs and desks for Tanzania. Meanwhile, Afiya trains as a seamstress.

Hamza has night terrors. One night, Afiya wakes him and asks him to describe what he saw. He talks about reliving war scenes and seeing images of the officer, the pastor, and the sergeant. Afiya worries that she may come home someday and find that, just as her parents and her brother suddenly deserted her, Hamza will be gone as well. He says he will never leave her because he was also abandoned as a child.

Five months after their marriage, Afiya miscarries on her first pregnancy. Asha cares for her tenderly, just as she did when Afiya was a little girl. After the miscarriage, Afiya rises with a new confidence and takes over many of the household duties she had relied on Asha to handle before.

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By Abdulrazak Gurnah

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Abdulrazak Gurnah


Abdulrazak Gurnah