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Towards Asmara

Thomas Keneally

7 Reviews

Rated 0

Fiction, Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945), Historical fiction

A remarkable novel about the Eritrean war, likened to For Whom The Bell Tolls and as relevant today as on its first publication.

During the Eritrean struggle for independence from Ethiopia, four Westerners travel under Eritrean rebel escort through a land of savage beauty and bitter drought towards the ancient capital of Asmara.

Each is on a personal mission, all are irrevocably changed as they bear witness to the devastation of war as well as to the Eritreans' courage and humanity in the face of constant attack.

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Praise for Towards Asmara

  • It is a tribute to the power of his narrative that his book reads as the factual account of a journey behind the lines, in the course of which a forgotten history is given flesh and blood - Observer

  • The landscape and the scenario of war and famine are brilliantly used as a backdrop against which the characters' own internal strife and moral hunger are illuminated - Daily Mail

  • Not since For Whom the Bell Tolls has a book of such sophistication, the work of a major international novelist, spoken out so unambiguously on behalf of an armed struggle - New York Times Book Review

  • Keneally advances on the interminable conflict with all his customary assurance and probing curiosity . . . The war springs vividly to life . . . [He] keeps things moving through a brilliantly portrayed landscape - Guardian

  • Memorable, provocative, full of interest - Literary Review

  • A touching tribute to a nation which survives, miraculously, on hope against hope - The Sunday Times

  • Keneally has created a passionate, clear-sighted protagonist, and his companions are just as compelling . . . They react and interact in an atmosphere at once dangerous and invigorating - Time Out

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Thomas Keneally

Thomas Keneally, of Irish extraction, was brought up in Australia and still lives in Sydney. His novels include The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith, Confederates (which first led him to study nineteenth century American history). Schindler's Ark was later turned into as remarkable a film by Steven Spielberg under the title Schindler's List.

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