Mirror Cracked is set mainly in Rondebosch, Cape Town. A picture-perfect, prayerful, Muslim family gets rocked to its core by double tragedy, resultant in its wheels falling off.
Through the two strong characters, husband and wife, Fareed and Azraa, their two children, extended family and friends, Raashida Khan manages to weave an intriguing and steamy tale guaranteed to take the reader on a roller coaster of emotions.
In the book, the old learn from the young. Zack, being the younger of the two lovers demonstrates through his life the importance of living one’s truth as a gay person in present-day South Africa.
The teenager Zayaana was resilience personified in navigating through her sister’s terminal illness. She taught the adults in her life, the magic of playing the cards that one is dealt with. The transformation of Munira from a self-centred, manipulative younger sister, to a reliable pillar of strength for her sister and nieces showed how people can mature and change to the better.
The book started off slow for me. It had not gripped me at the 30-page mark. Only after the introduction of Zack was my interest piqued. Certain events are related more than ones, from the perspective of different characters. I found this repetitive and would most likely be appreciated by a forgetful reader. All sex scenes were penned beautifully, graphic, but not obscene, especially the man on man. Something a reader could do at home.
I resonated fully with the content. Matters of religion, patriarchy, sexuality, family, friendship, career, mental health are cross-cultural. I highly recommend it.
Raashida Khan, is a copywriter, proofreader, content creator, poet, and author of short stories. She started embracing her artistic and literary career after her forty-year milestone. It reminded me of the likes of Tony Morrison, who produced numerous books after her 39th birthday. Mirror Cracked is Khan’s award-winning debut novel. The sequel Fragrance of Forgiveness is available in the market.