Saturday, October 01, 2005
SWEETNESS IN THE BELLY by Camilla Gibb
Gibb's new novel takes place in politically unstable Ethiopia in the 70s and conservative Thatcherite London of the 80s. It is a rich cultural tale of protagonist Lilly, a white Muslim woman, who is always an outsider. Gibb recounts the horror that unfolds in Ethiopia with Haile Selassie's dethroning and the famine that envelops the country. Later, an exile in London, Lilly advocates for refugees while refusing to face truths about herself. This story of cultural displacement and assimilation rings true. SWEETNESS IN THE BELLY is short-listed for this year's Scotiabank Giller Prize.