August 13, 2008

Amulya Malladi's "The Sound of Language"- A 'Honeyed' Tale of Immigrant Experience in Denmark

"THE SOUND OF LANGUAGE is the story of a unique friendship. Every language has a sound and beyond that sound is acceptance and that's what my book is about. I hope that those who read it will re-evaluate any prejudices they have, and I hope very much that they will start to question how their governments treat refugees and immigrants." A. Malladi

Amulya Malladi came in recommended as 'has yet to disappoint' author and that is how I picked her "The Sound of Language" to carry with me as I traveled half way across the globe this summer. I must say the novel delivered; in that I finished it in less than a day! A light summer read that captures the travails of a recently widowed Afghani woman, who after escaping the clutches of the Taliban, finds herself in Denmark, a country which is not always immigrant friendly; especially to those who though forced out of their homeland, still carry the hope of returning there at some point in time.

Amulya Malladi, an Indian who lived in the US for a while, now writes out of Denmark where she lives with her Danish husband and has this to say about her country of residence: " Racism is rampant among Danish youth, and I'm not sure that boys like Anders and his friends (characters in this novel) are going to remain a minority in the not-so-very-distant future...the hardest part about living in Denmark is that as an immigrant you are expected to leave where you come from behind, completely, and become Danish...I rarely meet immigrants who say they love living in Denmark. It's a difficult country to immigrate to...hard for people who don't have my advantages." In the same breath she admits, " I miss the USA very, very much. I miss the friendly people, I miss the wide open spaces, I miss..."

Despite her mixed feelings for Denmark, Ms. Malladi, an immigrant herself, has in this novel, painted a Danish canvas that hosts some very likable Danes as also some delusional refugees who live out a lifetime on Danish welfare hoping to return to their homeland; a homeland that had so mercilessly forced them out not so long ago. Malladi's portrayal of the immigrant experience is very fair, and inspires the reader to believe that the milk of human kindness runs in every vein regardless of national identities.

An easy 'honeyed' summer read with the bees, the breeze et all!


Anrosh said...

though i am not a fiction reader this post comes just in time when i posted and deleted that i was looking for a book on scandinavian culture.

human being said...

really enjoyed reading your review... you write in such a way that just leaves us drooling for the book!
but don't think i'd like to read this book... i'm on a diet!!

Raza Rumi said...

thanks for the intro - yet again, this was a nice review :)