Book review: Granta 125: After the War, Edited by John Freeman
Arifa Akbar is literary editor of The Independent and i newspapers. She has worked at The Independent since 2001 as a news reporter and arts correspondent before joining the books desk in 2009. She was a judge for the Orwell Prize for books, 2013, and is currently a judge of the Fiction Uncovered Prize 2014, and the Independent Scholastic New Children's Prize 2014.
Friday 11 October 2013
This collection does not deal with fresh scars but the unfading memories that, decades later, are still seared into a landscape, and a soul.
The best writing approaches the subject matter in surprising ways: Hari Kunzru on a visit to Chernobyl and the sinister lure of disaster tourism in "Stalkers"; Aminatta Forna's discomfort on a family visit to Tehran in 1978 as a teenager and Paul Auster talking to himself – "you" – as a young Jew in postwar New Jersey: "To be accepted by most and yet eyed with suspicion by others."
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