A Beautiful Lie


Author: Irfan Master
Translator: Tanti Lesmana
Publisher: PT Gramedia Pustaka Utama
Publication Date: September 2012
Pages: 302

"...kenapa orang-orang tidak bisa memahami bahwa huruf-huruf, kata-kata dan buku-buku membuat kita lebih kaya daripada yang sanggup kita bayangkan?"

--Irfan Master A Beautiful Lie page 19

This is the debut of Irfan Master, a novelist and a librarian who was born in Leicester in 1977 to a Pakistani mother and Indian father. He has always felt like the child of three countries, a fact that has played  a significant role in his life and inspired him to write this great novel.

The setting is India in 1947, following a struggle that has lasted over two decades, unfortunately the partition will soon divide India into two countries mainly along religious lines, India for Hindus and Sikhs, Pakistan for Muslims.

The central character here is a thirteen-year-old boy, Bilal. He has far greater problems at home namely his brother's terrorist activities and his father's life threatening illness. As it becomes certain his father will die of the cancer, Bilal makes decision to keep politics and the news of what happening to his beloved India away from his father, he can't bear for his dad to die broken-hearted.

With his three loyal friends, little Chota the Hindu, Sikh Manjeet, and Bilal's muslim fellow, Saleem, Bilal sets a plan to convince his widowed father that India will remain whole. This is definitely not an easy thing to do. This is the beginning of Bilal's lie. One lie that will lead to another lie until he concludes that everybody lies. But this is not just a lie. This is a beautiful lie.

The story is fascinating with a vivid portrayal of India in 1947 when the country was in political turmoil, some great characters and of course the friendship among the four of them. Their friendship is one of the best things told in the book. It's more than just a friendship. It's a heart-warming and honest relationship. They all get along perfectly despite their different faith.This friendship shows a contrast compared to India's condition at that time. 

This novel has been nominated and shortlisted for several awards, among others; North East Book Award 2012, Essex Book Awards 2012, Amazing Book Award 2012 and it will be published in seven languages. A beautiful book about tolerance, love and friendship.

2 comments:

miamembaca November 15, 2012 at 8:09 AM  

Hai Mbak! Lama ga mampir sini :) Penasaran buku yang mbak foto dengan indahnya iniii, ditunggu reviewnya yaa..

riana November 18, 2012 at 5:28 PM  

haiii mia, buku ini tentang kisah sederhana namun penuh makna, tsahhh..hehe..enjoy the reading:)