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Beauty Is a Wound

Paperback - 08 September 2015
Kurniawan, Eka (Author)
Tucker, Annie (Translator)
Rp 429,000
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The epic novel Beauty Is a Wound combines history, satire, family tragedy, legend, humor, and romance in a sweeping polyphony. The beautiful Indo prostitute Dewi Ayu and her four daughters are beset by incest, murder, bestiality, rape, insanity, monstrosity, and the often vengeful undead. Kurniawan's gleefully grotesque hyperbole functions as a scathing critique of his young nation's troubled past: the rapacious offhand greed of colonialism; the chaotic struggle for independence; the 1965 mass murders of perhaps a million "Communists," followed by three decades of Suharto's despotic rule.
Beauty Is a Wound astonishes from its opening line: One afternoon on a weekend in May, Dewi Ayu rose from her grave after being dead for twenty-one years.... Drawing on local sources--folk tales and the all-night shadow puppet plays, with their bawdy wit and epic scope--and inspired by Melville and Gogol, Kurniawan's distinctive voice brings something luscious yet astringent to contemporary literature.

Customer Reviews

2 customer reviews Between 2−3 stars rating, 06 April 2018
Great Indonesia lit!
By: Rosy Tandean

Cantik itu Luka (Beauty is a Wound) starts with a very dead woman clawing her way out of a grave. It is the most confusing, complicated and strangest novel I've ever read. It has a good portion of humour and legends but it talks about sensitive subjects in such way which some people may find offensive. The violence towards women in this book sickened me pretty quickly. The only reason why I did not stop reading it is because I wanted to find out why the book got some international attention since it won the best translated book award and the book itself has been translated into more than twenty languages. Overall, this book is going to be informative and educating if you read it with an open mind, yet it's too far out of my comfort zone.

2 customer reviews Between 4−5 stars rating, 30 November 2017
Beauty is a Wound
By: Ishlah Bimo Prakoso

This is a great book to bring back the era of Ananta Toer as it contains a thoughtful meaning with a dramatic series of events

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