On a late November afternoon Saleh Omar arrives at Gatwick Airport from Zanzibar, a far away island in the Indian Ocean. With him he has a small bag in which. By the Sea [Abdulrazak Gurnah] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. On a late November afternoon Saleh Omar arrives at Gatwick Airport. By the Sea [Abdulrazak Gurnah] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. In the late afternoon of November 23rd, Saleh Omar arrives at Gatwick.

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Sign up here to receive your FREE alerts. I was never “gripped”, though I liked the ways in which the narrative alternates between two characters’ stories, and how these stories bring up historical facts, personal bu of rivalry, travel and friendship, and contemporary issues e.

Weekly Newsletter Poetry Matters: Its scenes of family life and strife in Zanzibar, contrasted with the “civilized,” bureaucratic, and officious behavior of the British at home and abroad, establish strong contrasts and illuminate the themes.

BY THE SEA by Abdulrazak Gurnah | Kirkus Reviews

With him he has a small bag in which there lies his most precious possession – a mahogany box containing incense. For me it’s a bit special, as I know the author in person, so I had that …more Hi Lindsay, I saw you asked a question on By the Sea, which I finished today. Overall, a book that needs every word read. Leila rated it really liked it Dec 19, Ultimately he shows us that when ordinary people are allowed or find a way even in repressive political systems to relate to one another as individuals, they bring light to an otherwise sad and frightening world.

I would certainly recommend this book to any interested in the life of refugees or anyone after a light but good read. What other items do customers buy after viewing this item? No amount is too small. Much of the book is Saleh telling Latif the real story of this feud; style is unusual as the story is told like a story rather than as narrative.


There were parts of this book that were like listening to a maestro story teller, then there were parts of great mundane detail. Gurnah strips his characters to the essentials, removing their family, possessions and homes, cutting down to the bare bones of identity and relationship.

By the Sea

There was a problem adding your email address. I keep thinking about this book when I want to find another book that I will also keep thinking about. It was maps that gave it shape and made it seem like territory, like something that could be possessed, not just laid waste and plundered.

This is an example of how good writing can turn a simple plot into a wonderful reading experience. Customers who bought this item also bought. By the Sea is an intimate story- a story of family in the nuclear and extended sense. Admitting Saleh to the UK, Edelman also steals his only possession of worth: Inevitably, the two men get together in a little seaside English town.

The refugee acquires a voice and a name, and as he does so, not only his identity and history but that of his country, with the deep changes wrought in it by colonization and revolution, become clear with a vividness that could never have been captured by a more conventional narration. Saleh, he learns, has been pursued vindictively by Rajab and his wife, Asha, the mistress of a powerful minister.

Review: By the Sea | Boston Review

A thorough let down in Gurnah’s narration was the dramatic, complicated, and oftentimes, mellifluous storytelling. I waited for him to speak, but he said nothing, and after a moment he sighed and leaned back again, I rose carefully, so that I should not stumble in my weariness and te him think me feeble, and went to the kitchen.


These sections of the book did not become a theme but were one of the highlights to me. I look forward to reading more from this author. A Map to the Door of No Return: The Recorder Herselman Hattingh. Well-written beautifully poetic and evocative and full of on-point psychological insights about two men who meet in England and who have pasts in Zanzibar that connect them.

Retelling the stories that Saleh bears with him is part an act of confessional disclosure – Saleh as ancient mariner, hoping to shrive his soul – and part a move towards repossession of a history otherwise lost or obscured by lies. Silence may indeed be protection, but it is only once he finds the voice and the strength to tell his story, that he is able to resolve his issues with the past. Rewriting Poland Marta Figlerowicz. I was learning to resist drawing the curtains and flooding the room with light, just so as to expel the gloom of that slow fhe onset of night.

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To ask other readers questions about By the Seaplease sign up. Started gurnaah thinking it was a bit hard teh read and a bit dependent on my mood. The narrator begins to tell Rachel stories, starting with the tale of the origins of his incense. It completely obscured the aforesaid simplistic plot. I thought I should rise and make some more tea, put the light on in the kitchen, break the grip of the silence in which we had been sitting then for a few minutes.