V.V. Ganeshananthan’s novel “Brotherless Night”

My sister recommended V.V. Ganeshananthan’s novel “Brotherless Night.” It is a very straightforward “historical fiction” account of a young woman’s experiences during the Tamil Tiger civil war against the Sinhalese government of Sri Lanka. The reader learns a bit of history. I wouldn’t say it is a highly literary novel; the prose is straightforward. The characters remain fairly static. The mysterious K. and T. after a decade of experiences in war seem hardly changed. The young woman protagonist Sashi similarly has no epiphany or like. If the intent is to present the matter-of-factness of actions in a slow war like the Sri Lanka civil war, then it does that admirably. if the intent was to present “a private affair” then I would take Beppe Fenoglio.

About mkevane

Economist at Santa Clara University and Director of Friends of African Village Libraries.
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