Read Home Fire by Kamila Shamsie Online

Home Fire

Isma is free. After years of watching out for her younger siblings in the wake of their mothers death, shes accepted an invitation from a mentor in America that allows her to resume a dream long deferred. But she cant stop worrying about Aneeka, her beautiful, headstrong sister back in London, or their brother, Parvaiz, whos disappeared in pursuit of his own dream, to prove himself to the dark legacy of the jihadist father he never knew. When he resurfaces half a globe away, Ismas worst fears are confirmed.Then Eamonn enters the sisters lives. Son of a powerful political figure, he has his own birthright to live up toor defy. Is he to be a chance at love? The means of Parvaizs salvation? Suddenly, two families fates are inextricably, devastatingly entwined, in this searing novel that asks: What sacrifices will we make in the name of love?...

Title : Home Fire
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780735217683
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 276 pages
Url Type : Home » Home » Home Fire

Home Fire Reviews

  • Trish

    Shamsie’s novel was long-listed for the Man Booker Prize for 2017. It is topical: two British families with Muslim religious roots and Pakistani backgrounds cone together in a doomed pas de deux . The author Shamsie, according to cover copy, grew up in Karachi, and yet in her picture she has the round eyes of a Westerner. The cultural difficulties she writes of may not be too difficult for her to imagine, I’m guessing.

    I read this novel very fast—it has a strange, porous density to it. The meanin
    ...more

  • Larry H

    Ever since their mother and grandmother died within the period of a year, Isma has cared for her younger twin siblings, Aneeka and Parvaiz. Their well-being has always been her first concern, even if it meant sacrificing her own dreams and ambitions. But now that the twins have turned 18, Isma is finally putting herself first, accepting an invitation from a mentor to travel to America and co-author a paper with her.

    That doesn't mean Isma won't worry about her siblings—Aneeka, smart, beautiful, a
    ...more

  • Trudie

    This book reminded me of why I love fiction so much.

    Sometimes I pick up a book for escapism, sometimes to be challenged by a writer who is a master with language, occasionally it's because I feel obligated to read a particular book. Home Fire reminded me that if I was to distill my enjoyment down to one factor it would be the pleasure to be had from placing yourself in the minds and lives of others. Particularly when these others are experiencing things you thought you could never understand.
    ...more

  • Erin

    Audiobook performed by Tania Rodrigues 7h 54 min

    A shortlist candidate for the Women's Prize for Fiction 2018.

    If my reading of longlist nominee Miss Burma was the least read book, then Home Fire certainly appears to be one of the more popular reads of my fellow reviewers. Written by Kamila Shamsie, a British-Pakistani author, Home Fire strikes a relevant chord in the post 9/11 world where discrimination against Muslim men and women in our airports, media, and among the general public is
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  • Diane S ☔

    There are so many timely subjects right now, world concerns and threats, and authors have responded in kind. This novel features two Muslim families in Britain, two families that have very different opinions on family and how to show or display their Muslim beliefs. It moves the themes in Sophocles, Antigone to present times. I remember very little about Antigone, refreshed my memory on Wiki, but I cannot really knowledgeably comment on the adequecy of the comparison.

    The novel starts out slowly
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  • Doug

    4.5 A modern gloss on Antigone, this Booker nominee is now in 2nd place of my ranked longlisted books (with four other nominees to go!). Unlike several GR friends who either had no prior knowledge of its classical connection, or weren't conversant in the original Greek, that element undoubtedly enhanced my appreciation of what Shamsie achieves here (my degrees are in theatre, so I am fairly knowledgeable about the original texts).

    It was fascinating to me not only to see how the central elements
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  • Claire McAlpine

    I read Home Fire in two days, I thought it was brilliantly done, heartbreaking, tragic, essential.

    Underpinning the novel is the premise of Sophocles' 5thC BC play Antigone, an exploration of the conflict between those who affirm the individual's human rights and those who must protect the state's security.

    Before reading Kamila Shamsie's Home Fire, I downloaded a translation of Antigone to read, acknowledging herself that Anne Carson's translation of Antigone (Oberon Books, 2015) and

    The Burial a

    "Stories are a kind of nourishment. We do need

    them, and the fact that the story of Antigone, a

    story about a girl who wants to honour the body

    of her dead brother, and why she does, keeps being

    told suggests that we do need this story, that it

    might be one of the ways that we make life and

    death meaningful, that it might be a way to help

    us understand life and death, and that there's

    something nourishing in it, even though it is full

    of terrible and difficult things, a very dark story

    full of sadness."


    Kamila Shamsie's Home Fire is a contemporary retelling of the classic play, set in contemporary London. Even though I knew the premise of the story from having read the play, the story unfolded as if I had no prior knowledge of its likely outcome, it has its own unique surprises and insights, making it a compelling read.

    We meet Isma, the eldest daughter of a family, who've been raised by their mother and grandmother, as she announces to her twin brother and sister Aneeka and Parvaiz that she is going to the US to complete her PhD studies that were put on pause after the death of their mother and grandmother within the space of a year, leaving her to become the mother to griefstruck twelve-year-old twins. She had briefly known her father, but the twins never.

    The rigorous interrogation she is put through on leaving the UK reveal something in her family background that their entire family has tried to keep quiet, just wanting to move on with their lives, that their father had abandoned them and gone to fight as a jihadi in Afghanistan and had died en route to Guantanamo.

    While in the US, Isma meets Eamonn, the son of a British politician she detests, setting in motion a litany of events that will have a catastrophic impact on both their families.

    "Eamonn, that was his name. How they'd laughed in Wembley when the newspaper article accompanying the family picture revealed this detail, an Irish spelling to disguise a Muslim name - Ayman become Eamonn so that people would know the father had integrated."


    For Parvaiz, the only son, the lack of a father figure created a void, his grandmother had been the only family member willing to talk about him, but her stories were always of the boy, never of the man he became, a subject she was reluctant to be drawn into.

    "He had always watched boys and their fathers with an avidity composed primarily of hunger. Whenever any of those fathers had made a certain gesture towards him - a hand placed on the back of his neck, the word 'son', an invitation to a football match - he'd retreat, both ashamed and afraid in a jumbled way that only grew more so as the years passed and the world of girls and boys grew more separate, so there were times he was not a twin to a twin but rather the only male in a house that knew all the secrets that women shared with on another but none that fathers taught their son."


    It's a riveting, intense novel that propels the reader forward, even while something in us wants to resist what we can feel coming. It pits love against loyalty, family versus country, and cruelly displays how hard it is for families to distance themselves from their ancestral past. ...more

  • Gumble's Yard

    Winner of the 2018 Women's Prize. And a book which seems uncanningly prescient given the recent change in Home Secretary.

    A book I originally read due to its longlisting for the 2017 Booker prize and by an author whose previous works I have not read.

    In the stories of wicked tyrants men and women are punished with exile, bodies are kept from their families –their heads impaled on spikes, their corpses thrown into unmarked graves. All these things happen according to the law, but not according to
    ...more