Sarah A Smith

Identity Crisis

Home Fire


Bloomsbury Circus 264pp £16.99 order from our bookshop

Kamila Shamsie’s Home Fire opens with a scene of humiliation. Isma is about to miss her flight: airport security staff refuse to believe a designer jacket can really belong to her, and they are keen to know ‘her thoughts on Shias, homosexuals, the Queen, democracy, the Great British Bake Off’. It is not simply her ethnicity or her religion that has marked the protagonist out for attention; it is her family too. As the daughter of a jihadi, someone else’s reputation precedes Isma and her siblings wherever they go.

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