Book Review: A Beautiful Lie by Irfan Master

Everybody lies. We all do it. On 14th August 1947, I learnt that everybody lies but that not all lies are equal...
Many years ago I told one lie that has taken on a life of its own. The only time I was sure of anything was all those years ago, when I was a boy. When I was lying. But now the truth needs to be told...
A Beautiful Lie is Irfan Master's debut novel; it is set in 1947 during the partition of India. Bilal is a young boy whose father is dying; he knows that he does not have long left. Bilal knows that if his father found out about the Partition then he would be heartbroken. So he has to do everything that he can to prevent the news from reaching his father's ears. Saleem and Chota are Bilal's best friends and they do everything that they can to help.
Although Bilal's main focus is to protect his father from the truth; he and his friends cannot help but get caught up in the violence and politics taking place in their country.
Irfan Master is dealing with an extremely serious subject and one that still has great relevancy today. It is written at a level that young adult readers would understand without being patronising. Bilal's love for his father shines out throughout the book. He tells a lie to protect his father but at the same time he must face up to the reality of what is happening in India and how different his country and his place in that country will be once his father has died.
A Beautiful Lie is an excellent debut novel and I think that Irfan Master will be an author to look out for in 2011.

Many thanks to Bloomsbury for sending me a copy to review, A Beautiful Lie is published today. 

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