Forgiving Ararat - My Current Obsession

In between the craze of relocating (and entertaining family from afar), I took some time off to read. Yes, I'm addicted like that. Addicted, and can't do without some intellectual debate or at least a question that sparks a thousand explanations. 

Reading gives me that.

Which is why I'm here this sunny afternoon - with a cup of coffee, albeit instant - hoping to jot down a good read that I want to immortalize in my own sphere.

For anyone who loves an intelligent read speckled with vivid imagination; one that will leave you pondering and questioning long after the last pages, I'd say pick up Forgiving Ararat by first time novelist Gita Nazareth.

As the title suggests, this novel is about forgiveness. Forgiving the wrong and right; the friend and foe; the love and justice; and most importantly, forgiving oneself.

Although the story starts when Brek’s life ended, (not unlike The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold whose MC was also a dead 14-year old) this novel is full of the precious aspects that make up life. By delving into her past life, Brek discovers many lives before hers that intertwined with her own, the branch of history that determined her life, or rather, death. Here, Nazareth cleverly blurs the line between dream, life and death; and leaves one to question if these realms might not be so different afterall.

The novel is heavy with issues on war, religion, politics, law and history. It would have been a dread to read if not for Nazareth’s smart and playful choice of words. It is fascinating how she engages readers through the significant subjects and touches us with beauty, sadness and forgiveness.

This novel is a collection of stories from different people. Each life brings with it the beautiful, the injustice and ultimately seeks the forgiveness that they deserve. Each life affects readers as they read, creating a bigger and complete picture, that is, the life as we know it. During the course of a lifetime, we’ve met and bonded with numerous people and created our own stories. By taking a step back, one will see how many lives they have touched, hurt and changed.

Nazareth also mocks the religion as an intellectual and challenges the possibility of anyone who would actually know what happened years before even the great ancestors were born? In opening our eyes and mind, Nazareth allows us to accept how different each of our perspectives is.

Furthermore, by using death as a platform (one that I loved if you realised), Nazareth strengthens her idea of forgiveness. For nothing else matters in death except forgiveness. No matter what wrong and bad a man has done, as long as one is willing to look through the man’s eyes, one will always see reason and learn to forgive.

Overall, this is a highly personal and evolving book. If you're interested to know more, check out their website. Or better yet, join the discussion between Forgiving Ararat and The Lovely Bones online.

I need more books with similar premises. Any recommendation, my lovelies?