Corona reviewed in The Four Quarters Magazine


By Bhaswati Ghosh
December 8, 2013

“For second-generation immigrants born to South Asian immigrant parents in the Western world, life is a two-fold quest. While their parents float in self-created bubbles by popping open the time capsules in which they arrive from their home country, the offspring have to oscillate between the period drama they’re expected to feature in while at home or in ethnic gatherings and the ‘real’ life they lead in school, with friends and the community at large. Notions of tradition, identity, home, and assimilation haunt them at every step. Caught in this quandary is Razia Mirza, the young protagonist of Bushra Rehman’s debut novel, “Corona.”

Following her excommunication from a tight Muslim community in New York for her rebellious streak, Razia, a second-generation Pakistani, embarks on several journeys in her search for herself. This journey within a journey probably defines the life arc of many a second generation desis—the umbrella term for Indians and Pakistanis in the Western world. And just like an arc can never be a straight line, so is Razia’s story—non-linear, disjointed, criss-crossed—yet meaningful and honest.”

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