Brick Lane

  • by Monica Ali
  • Narrated by Meera Syal
  • 15 hrs and 19 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Shortlisted for the 2003 Man Booker Prize
This exciting and deeply moving debut novel follows the tumultuous life of Nazneen from her birth in a Bangladeshi village hut, to her arranged marriage to Chanu and the subsequent move to London's Tower Hamlets.
Nazneen's inauspicious entry to the world, an apparent stillbirth on the hard mud floor of a Bangladeshi village hut, imbues in her a sense of fatalism that she carries across continents when she is married off to Chanu. Her life in London's Tower Hamlets is, on the surface, calm. For years, keeping house and rearing children, she does what is expected of her. Yet Nazneen walks a tightrope stretched between her daughters' embarrassment and her husband's resentments. Chanu calls his elder daughter the little memsahib. 'I didn't ask to be born here,' say Shahana, with regular finality.
Into that fragile peace walks Karim. He sets questions before her, of longing and belonging; he sparks in her a turmoil that reflects the community's own; he opens her eyes and directs her gaze -- but what she sees, in the end, comes as a surprise to them both.
While Nazneen journeys along her path of self-realization, a way haunted by her mother's ghost, her sister Hasina, back in Bangladesh, rushes headlong at her life, first making a 'love marriage', then fleeing her violent husband. Woven through the novel, Hasina's letters from Dhaka recount a world of overwhelming adversity. Shaped -- yet ultimately not bound -- by their landscapes and memories, both sisters struggle to dream themselves out of the rules prescribed for them.
Beautifully rendered and, by turns, both comic and deeply moving, Brick Lane establishes Monica Ali as one of the most exciting new voices in fiction.


What the Critics Say

“Warm, shrewd, startling and hugely readable: the sort of book you race through greedily, dreading the last page.” ( The Observer)
“The joy of this book is its marriage of a wonderful writer with a fresh, rich and hidden world...written with love and compassion for every struggling character in its pages." ( Evening Standard)
“A humanely forgiving story about love....Brick Lane may be Ali's first novel, but it is written with a wisdom and skill that few authors attain in a lifetime.” ( The Sunday Times)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Brick Lane

I decided to read this book because l had heard so much about it. It was not the sort of book l would normally read. I found it very slow in parts. It gives an insight into the way of life of people from Bangladesh. I am not sure whether l would recommend it to anyone else.
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- Susan Whitehead

Simply brilliant

The reader brought a brilliant book to life one of rare occasions I would honestly say better than reading
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- Harriet Ellis

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-11-2012
  • Publisher: Whole Story Audiobooks