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Extract from A God in Every Stone

This extract comes from pp. 287–288 of Kamila Shamsie’s A God in Every Stone. We’re interested in your reading experience. Did any part of this passage draw you in or jump out at you in a particular way? Highlight any portion of the text to annotate the passage with your own thoughts.

The dead man was young, childhood’s mark still on his features. Qayyum lowered his head in shame as he stood in front of the body explaining to the boy’s father and brothers the terms of the funeral. If only Ghaffar Khan were in Peshawar, surely this wouldn’t happen. But the men accepted what he said without question. They’d worried they wouldn’t be allowed to the graveyard at all; any burial was better than none.

Only one of the men appeared not to listen to anything Qayyum said. He sat on the ground, holding the hand of the dead man whose face was his face. Twins, one of the men of the family whispered to Qayyum. He carried the corpse home all the way from the Street of Storytellers; he said it was like carrying his own death. Qayyum knelt in front of the unpaired twin.

– I’m sorry. To lose a brother must be the greatest of all griefs.

The man looked up at Qayyum.

– Do you have brothers?

– Yes, one.

– Was he on the Street of Storytellers yesterday?

– No. He’s in the Cantonment. He must be worrying about me but I don’t know when he and I can reach each other again.

– Come with us then.

– What?

– Come with us when we leave the Walled City for the graveyard.


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