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Tasneem Jamal

Tasneem Jamal was born in Uganda and immigrated to Canada with her family in 1975.  She has worked as a journalist, editor and writer.  Her debut novel, Where the Air is Sweet, is informed by historical events and real experiences of members of her family.  Jamal says of the novel, “It is, at its simplest, a story of movement and longing.”  Jamal now lives in Kitchener, Ontario.
Where the Air is Sweet book cover


Where the Air is Sweet

Toronto: HarperCollins Publisher, 2014.
PS8619 .A42 W44 2014

Publisher’s Synopsis (from its website)

In 1972, dictator Idi Amin expelled 80,000 South Asians from Uganda. Though many had lived in East Africa for generations, they were forced to flee in ninety days as their country descended into a surreal vortex of chaos and murder.

Spanning the years between 1921 and 1975, Where the Air Is Sweet tells the story of Raju, a young Indian man drawn to Africa by the human impulse to seek a better life, and three generations of his family, who carve a life for themselves in a racially stratified colonial and post-colonial society. Where the Air Is Sweet is the story of a family: their loves, their griefs and, finally, their sudden expulsion at the hands of one of the world’s most terrifying tyrants.


Publisher HarperCollins Canada

Tasneem Jamal personal website