Back to Bukhara, a novel by Shahzoda Nazarova
“Back to Bukhara” (in 335 pages) is the story of Malika, a young and curious Tajik woman. She is seeking peace and solitude in the Netherlands when a letter from a friend takes her back to Bukhara, her hometown in Uzbekistan. The story behind the letter and the friend who wrote it involves a long-lost manuscript and her quest to find it results in a confrontation with the country’s national security guards. Although she does not succeed in finding this document, she returns with another, much more important book written by a local writer, her old history teacher, who has suffered interrogation in his land many times for his writings. His book is about a murderous Emir of Bukhara, one who was responsible for executing peaceful messengers from outside the region, as well as brutally murdering many of his wives. Shahzoda Nazarova Samarqandi is a Tajik award winning writer, who writes in Tajik/Persian language and this is her an English debut novel edited by David Maytum.