Love can find us in the most unusual of circumstances. This is what happens to Khalid Patel, a terrorist, when he falls in love with Smokey, a feisty and independent young woman who was to be Britain’s first female suicide bomber. On what is meant to be his day of martyrdom, his violent worldview is thrown into turmoil. We share his thoughts as Death and Duty become irrevocably and movingly entwined with Love and Life.
I received a copy of An Untimely Love from the author in exchange for my review & I have to admit that initially I was quite excited to read it. Sadly, that didn’t last. The sentence structure in An Untimely Love had me pulling out my hair, it was that bad & the book was riddled with typos, formatting errors & hyphens in places where hyphens didn’t belong. I appreciate that I was sent a Galley copy, which could account for the typing & formatting errors, but I have read a lot of Galley copies of books & none of them were as bad as this one! As an example, the title of the book was randomly inserted into the middle of pages where it didn’t belong – all of the way through the book. So, I would be reading a sentence, like this one: (and this is an EXACT quote from the book)
“The ceiling in my room is 2
An Untimely Love
lower than it was last night.”
That, as I said is exactly as it is in my copy of the book & this happens all the way through the book, making it very difficult to read. Another thing with the formatting which drove me crazy is that almost all words in the book which have 2 L’s are missing the 2nd L, so will is wil, all is al, filling is fil ing, pulls is pul s, etc. Again, this makes the book very hard to read – especially with the words that have 2 L’s in the middle of them.
Then there’s the hyphens. Apparently Emirates is spelled Emi-rates, scrotum is scro-tum, packing became pack-ing & on & on it went. Obviously this could be expected if any of the above words were at the edge of the page, thereby necessitating the use of a hyphen, but they weren’t.
As for the sentence structure – here is an example of what I am talking about. The below is a direct copy from An Untimely Love.
The ticking clock on my wall is unrelenting. It won’t slow down if only for a moment. Soon it wil be time for Sa-lat. I can hear movement in the other bedrooms. I must hurry so that I can use the bathroom. My final ablutions must be perfect. I take my green towel and razor blade and head to the bathroom. The first thing I do is use the air freshener. Tariq has been in here again.
The sound of the water running sooths my aching head.
The temperature is just right as I sit down and begin my ritual cleansing. I take my razor and shave all the hair from my scro-tum and down my thighs. I also shave my armpits and the rest of my body until I am as smooth as a baby. My beard I leave intact. I feel pure and reborn. I could just float over the red roofs into paradise. I wear fresh clean clothes and the broken wristwatch my dad gave me on my thirteenth birthday.
I go down to the kitchen and I see Tony sitting there, a cuppa in hand, reading the Telegraph. He gets up and we embrace.
An Untimely Love
“Would you like a cup of tea?” he says.
“I haven’t prayed yet.”
“Very good, we’l wait for the rest of them.” His mobile rings. He answers it and grunts something then hangs up. I don’t feel like making light conversation. I need to meditate.
That , by the way, is the entire chapter.
I did make myself read most of An Untimely Love – I got about 2/3 the way through & was so fed up that I skipped to the end to see what was going to happen. I shouldn’t really have bothered. It is a shame as there is real promise in the idea of this story – beyond the bombers fall in love plot, because there are actually 3 plots in this book. The 2nd & 3rd plots are not given away by the book description, so I won’t give them away here, just in case any of you are tempted to buy the book to judge it for yourself.
The last plot is a great idea & would have made for a great book, but it’s just a shame that it was so poorly written.