‘Where do you start someone’s story when every life has more than one thread and what we call birth is not the only beginning, nor is death exactly an end?’
‘People on both sides of the island [Cyprus] suffered – and people on both sides would hate it if you said that aloud. Why? Because the past is dark, distorted mirror. You look at it, you only see your own pain. There is no room in there for someone else’s pain’.
The Island of Missing Trees by Elif Shafak set in the 1970’s Cyprus and contemporary London of 2010’s is a tale narrated partly by a fig tree, partly by humans about the transgeneretional trauma, the burden of the past on the current and future generations when it comes to dealing with wars, pogroms, ethnic cleansing, enforced borders drawn on a piece of paper at one time in history and how it affects the lives of the future generations.
Elif Shafak has created a beautiful tale of wonder and nostalgia, pointing out to the connections between the past, present, and future as well as between the physical and the spiritual. It is also a profoundly moving ode to the natural world: world of non-human animals and plants.Continue reading “The Island of Missing Trees by Elif Shafak | Book Review”