Book Discussion Group at Fairfield Main Library
Oct 2, 2012
6:30pm. 3rd floor of the Main Library. Registration is not required. Lipstick in Afghanistan by Roberta Gately. Published 2010 by Gallery Press. Paperback, English ISBN: 9781439191385. Publishers Weekly 08/23/2010. A lipstick-loving nurse finds romance and friendship in war-torn Afghanistan in this nicely intentioned but trite debut. Ever since seeing photographs of the Rwandan genocide as a teenager, Boston nurse Elsa has dreamed of doing good for those less fortunate, so soon after Aide du Monde asks her to travel to Afghanistan to assist at a medical clinic, she's settling in a house recently vacated by the Taliban. Elsa quickly adjusts to her new life and work at the clinic, and though warned against fraternizing with the U.S. soldiers stationed nearby, she predictably falls for a handsome lieutenant. She also befriends a local woman who shares her love of lipstick, and the pair routinely endanger themselves in order to help others, culminating in a dangerous trip to scout a location for a school. Though the lipstick gimmick ("her lips colored a daring red for confidence") quickly gets old and the prose is pedestrian, Gately, a nurse who spent six months in Bamiyan, succeeds in pulling off the fish-out-of-water aspect of the story, giving readers an Afghanistan that occasionally has the tang of the real deal. (Nov.) Copyright 2010 Reed Business Information.
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