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The Mysteries of the Heights
Publication Date: October 2014
Price: £8.99
Extent: 200 pp (tbc)
Format: B-Format PB
Subject: Fiction
Qamar Takhyan

Set in the late 1980s, The Heart of Amber is a story of love and rebellion, of feminine courage and hope. Nabila, a social psychologist—bold, intelligent and amiably charming—loses her father to medical nemesis. Though deeply grieved, she is surprised to find herself in love with an Iranian surgeon, whose whole clan was tortured out of existence by Khomeini's theocratic regime. When they feel that they cannot live without each other they decide to get married. Unfortunately, it turns out that it is going to be an interfaith marriage, and both the community and the clergy turn hostile. But nothing daunts Nabila. She fights her way through a hell of opposition, caring little of its malicious might. She is harassed, threatened and rendered infamous, yet she does not give in. In spite of the persecuting mania of the herd, the wedding date is fixed. But would it be possible for the bridegroom to arrive? Or does he give in to the hostile forces only to leave the bride wretchedly alone? The climax is breathtakingly thrilling, yet too inspiring, too beatifying.

Qamar Takhyan is best known for his Urdu novel Gul-e-Sehra (Rose in the Wilderness). He edited an Urdu journal in the early nineties and published a number of articles in English on various subjects. The Heart of Amber is his debut English novel. He lives in Dhanbad, India.

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