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Saleema Nawaz Books In Order

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Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Bone & Bread (2013)Description / Buy at Amazon
Songs for the End of the World (2020)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Collections

Mother Superior (2008)Description / Buy at Amazon

Saleema Nawaz
Saleema Nawaz is a fiction author best known for her debut novel Bone & Bread. This novel won the Paragraphe Hugh MacLennan Prize for Fiction in 2013. Nawaz has also written many short stories that have appeared in different literary journals in Canada. Some of her notable short stories are My Three Girls and The White Dress. The talented author was born in Ontario, Canada. She went to Carleton University and completed her Bachelor of Humanities before proceeding to the University of Manitoba and acquiring an M.A. in English. Currently, Nawaz lives in Montreal, Quebec.

Bone & Bread
Bone & Bread tells the story of two sister’s Beena and Sadhana. The bond between these two was created throughout their unusual childhoods and shared tragedy. However, they later grow apart thanks to unavoidable circumstances. This story is told in two timelines. When we first meet Beena, she is an adult and a mother to a boy named Quinn. Beena is mourning the loss of her sister Sadhana. The death had been sudden and unexpected, but Beena feels somehow guilty for her sister’s death. It doesn’t help that Sadhana’s body was discovered a week later in her apartment. What caused Sadhana’s death? While Beena was not there for her sister in her last days, she is determined to uncover the mystery behind it.

The other timeline takes us back to their younger and teenage years. We get to see Beena and Sadhana start life in their small apartment. Their father is a Sikh who defies his parents to marry their mother. The girl’s mum was an American who converted to Sikhism and spent most of her time doing yoga and deep meditation. By the time the sisters hit teenage, their parents had died, and they are left in their uncle’s care. They struggle to understand the confusing beliefs, values, and rituals that have become part of their lives. At sixteen, Beena becomes pregnant by a bagel boy working in the shop below their apartment. Sadhana, on the other hand, is struggling with perfection and anorexia. Could Sadhana’s eating disorder be the cause of her untimely death?
As Beena goes to clean her sister’s apartment, she will be looking for clues to help with her investigation. Could her sister have been unhappy? Is there something Beena could have done to save her sister? There is also that girl Libby who reaches out to Beena and claims that she had important information to help with the case. Beena’s search for the truth opens wounds that threaten to undo all the good she had done for herself and her son. Through this story, the author shows how tough it is to go through a teenage without parents. As both girls try to take over responsibility for their lives, they make life-altering and dangerous decisions.

Bones & Bread is a captivating yet heartbreaking story about two sisters and the events that shape their lives. The writing is vivid and incredibly rich, making it hard to stop once you open this book. A political subplot in the story gives it an edge, and the Montreal setting is unique. Told in Beena’s voice, this story will make you love and care about the characters. It will also break your heart when bad things start happening to them.

Songs for the End of the World
Songs for the End of the World is a story of hope. It is a vivid tale of men and women and their experiences as they face a pandemic. This story introduces a few people living through a catastrophe. First, there is Elliot, a first responder based in New York. Eliot is running from his past failures, but he struggles many times to do the right thing. Next is Emma, a talented singer. Emma is pregnant and in the process of organizing a concert to benefit those affected by the outbreak. While she got her hands full, Emma cannot help but worry about her unborn child wondering what kind of a world the child was coming into. Lastly, there is Owen, the author. Owen’s best-selling novel is spookily similar to the unfolding pandemic. The more the lines between fact and fiction blur, the more we wonder whether Owen’s lifelong instincts were worth it.

So, what do these different characters have in common? Linking them is the ARAMIS girl. This woman is present at the first infection site, and thanks to her unknown identity, she causes quite a stir. Told from different POV’s this story makes us reflect on what is essential. We owe ourselves and others a lot, but we are often so distracted by the daily activities that we forget about them. This story acts as a reminder that something positive can come from disaster. Calamity tends to bring the best in humanity, and it is the unity and good deeds that preserve lives in the end.

This is a prophetic novel that shows how powerful human connections are in the time of crisis. Throughout the impending pandemic, family love and bonds are tested, and people realize that they grow stronger and more resilient the more they get closer to calamity. The story moves back and forth in time as the author lets us into how these characters’ lives are connected. More people intersect with their lives, which goes to show that we are never truly alone. It is interesting how the lives of these characters overlap over several decades. You will also love that the author explores the different ways these people cope with the pandemic.

Songs for the End of the World could not have been published at a better time. The fictitious story is similar to real-life situations as people cope with a pandemic’s effects in 2020. Unlike most apocalyptic stories, this one focuses on the people and the good they do for society’s sake. While some will be making reckless decisions, it is all done for the good of humanity. However, just like in real life, the story has both good and bad people.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Saleema Nawaz

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