by Timeri N Murari - £8.99 Allen & Unwin (2013)
paperback ISBN 13: 9781743311479 | ISBN 10: 1743311478
A soaring novel of resilience, hope, strength and tenderness, The Taliban Cricket Club reveals how love can overcome, and outwit, even the power of tyrants.
Rukhsana, a spirited young journalist in Kabul, is summoned to the infamous Ministry for the Propagation of Virtue and Prevention of Vice to face its terrifying minister, Zorak Wahidi. A cricket tournament is announced, with the winning team to travel to Pakistan for training and then represent Afghanistan at an international level.
In reality, the idea is ludicrous. The Taliban will never embrace a game rooted in civility, fairness and equality. And no one in Afghanistan even knows how to play cricket, except Rukhsana. But the tournament offers hope - a means of escape for her brother and young cousins. And for Rukhsana, escape is essential - Wahidi wants to marry her, a frightening proposition which will enslave her in his home.
With the help of her cousins, Rukhsana devises an audacious plan that could ensure their freedom. All they have to do is learn to play cricket - and win.
Dangerous, feisty and funny - totally engaging from the first page.
(Price & availability last checked: July 2019)