Tuesday, July 1, 2014 |
Farzana Doctor's second novel is a potent examination of grief and addiction. Twenty years after Ismail Boxwala makes the tragic mistake of forgetting his baby daughter in the car, he is middle-aged and alone and trying to blot out his memories and guilt through heavy drinking and casual sex with strangers. But his life begins to turn around after chance encounters with two women: a troubled queer rights activist who needs his help, and his widowed neighbour, who can't get over losing her husband.
Six Metres of Pavement won the 2012 Lambda Literary Award for Lesbian General Fiction.
"Years ago, long before Ismail Boxwala came to this country, a school friend told him that the only way to survive misfortune is to stay in motion. The friend was in a philosophical mood induced by too many beers and a recent heartbreak and imparted these words: if the body never moves, if the limbs are not exercised, sadness will turn the blood and lymph stagnant. Regret will cause the heart to grow weak, infection will creep in, and a person will die a slow, painful death.
Ismail Boxwala had no courage for this sort of dying."
From Six Metres of Pavement by Farzana Doctor ©2011. Published by Dundurn Press.