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Monkfish Moon by Romesh Gunesekera
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Monkfish Moon (1992)

by Romesh Gunesekera

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'These sad spare stories illustrate the shocking fragility of the whole modern world', June 25, 2014

This review is from: Monkfish Moon (Kindle Edition)
Collection of 9 short stories, mainly set in Sri Lanka and tinged with the issues of war. Not a lot happens in them; they are really a moment in time, but beautifully and movingly described.
I really liked 'Storm Petrel' where two friends meet up in Britain. One has just been back to Sri Lanka on holiday, and intends to return to start a guest-house. His dream wins the narrator over:

'The salt in the sea air lulled us almost to a sleep. Overhead the sea breeze echoed the roar of the surf as coconut trees brushed their heads together, whispering like giants planning our destiny. The sun was hot. CK was going over each step of his dream. But in just two months the whole island would be engulfed in flames...mined and strafed and bombed and pulverized, CK's beach...would be dug up, exploded and exhumed.'

Also enjoyed 'Carapace', where the narrator - a young girl with a care-free, happy relationship with a cook, is being inveigled into a suitable marriage with a well to do Sri Lankan in Australia with a 'real' job....

Having recently visited Sri Lanka, I really enjoyed the descriptions of the country. And the author's ability to portray the awkwardnesses and tensions between two people is excellent, notably between the master and servant in in 'A House in the Country'. Enjoyable read. ( )
  starbox | Jun 25, 2014 |
A collection of short fiction set between Britain and Sri Lanka. My favourite story is Batik, about a Sri Lankan couple living in London in an apartment they have carefully and lovingly renovated together. But now the news of atrocities committed at home threatens to tear their relationship apart. As in Reef, there's a sense of safety lost, a paradise despoiled.

Truth is held in the smallest of details - the gory dissection of the chicken for dinner, the bruise coloured door, the shards of a shattered cup.

A tiny gem but totally satisfying. ( )
  bibliobibuli | Nov 28, 2005 |
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For my mother and my father
the untold story
and Helen
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The nights has always been noisy: frogs, drums, bottles, dogs barking at the moon.
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