Finished reading: The Seven Moons of Maali Almeida by Shehan Karunatilaka 📚

I can see why this won the Booker last year the year before last. It’s beautifully written, with a kind of light, easy style. And yet it goes to some very, very dark places.

The titular Maali is dead at the start, finds himself in the afterlife, and doesn’t know how he died. He’s given seven days — the ‘moons’ of the title — to find out, or not, before he has to decide whether or not to go into ‘The Light’.

There are ghosts, ghouls, demons, and horrors. Most of the latter two are living humans, because we’re in Sri Lanka’s civil war, and Maali was a photographer who photographed the horrors. Many of the dead he meets died in atrocities, and they’re not shy about sharing their stories.

I can highly recommend this, but not if you’ll be too disturbed by stories of atrocities. So think of this as a content warning.

Books 2024, 2