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3.83 of 5 stars 3.83  ·  rating details  ·  1,262 ratings  ·  115 reviews
“The most beautiful love story in the world.”—Louis Aragon

The Second World War is raging, and Jamilia’s husband is off fighting at the front. Accompanied by Daniyar, a sullen newcomer who was wounded on the battlefield, Jamilia spends her days hauling sacks of grain from the threshing floor to the train station in their village in the Caucasus.

Spurning men’s advances and w...more
Paperback, 96 pages
Published January 1st 2008 by Telegram Books (first published 1958)
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I think the confusion about what this Aitmatov's 1958 short lyrical novella actually *is* stems from the often-quoted remark by the French writer Louis Aragon, hailing it as 'the most beautiful love story in the world'.

It *is* a love story of sorts, but it's *not* a romance. Seeing it as just a tale of two lovers is akin to reducing 'Anna Karenina' to nothing more but Anna and Vronsky's affair.

Love in this novella is far more than simply romance. It has a multitude of faces; it encompasses ever...more
Rifat Sanjida
কোন এক বিচিত্র কারণে আমার প্রায় সব প্রিয় বইয়েই কোন না কোন ভাবে ছবি আঁকাআঁকি নিয়ে একটা অংশ থাকে। এক জীবনে ভীষণভাবে আঁকিয়ে হতে চেয়েছিলাম বলেই? :)

জামিলার সূচনা অথবা শুরুই হয়েছে সাধারণ ফ্রেমে বাঁধানো ছোট্ট একটা ছবির গল্প নিয়ে। সাদামাটা একটা ছবি, শরতের রঙচটা আকাশে ধূসর মেঘের দল, পাহাড়ের দিকে ক্রমশ বেঁকে যাওয়া পথের ধারে শুকনো, ধুলোমাখা ঘাসের ঝোপ, আর গাড়ির চাকার প্রায় মুছে যাওয়া দাগের মতোই ক্রমে অস্পষ্ট হয়ে ওঠা দুটো মানুষের প্রতিকৃতি।
এদের একজন জামিলা।

স্তেপখামারের ধার ঘেঁষা পাহাড়ি গ্রামগুলো, যুদ্ধে যো...more
Carmo Santos
Peguei neste livro com grandes expectativas. Vindo do sótão (sacrilégio!) da Biblioteca Municipal era-me totalmente desconhecido, mas a recomendação era por demais positiva.
Abafei o ruido à minha volta com musica nos ouvidos, suficientemente alta para me distanciar do mundo.
E assim - por vezes na nossa vida - criamos momentos mágicos que nos ficarão na memória.
Em modo repetição, o Air de Bach, fundiu-se nos acordes melodiosos de uma das escritas mais bonitas que já li. Tinham-me aconselhado a lê...more

"Do the job he left behind."
"Women in the war -- we can't win without them."
"The girl he left behind is still behind him -- she's a WOW (Woman Ordinance Worker)"
"The more women at work, the sooner we win."

World War II officially lasted from 1939 until 1945, but the causes of the conflict and its horrible aftermath echoed for decades, dominated by unimaginable misery and destruction. In the late 1930s, the global population stood at approximately 2 billion. In less than a d...more
Sessenta páginas repletas de amor...
O brotar do primeiro amor do jovem narrador...
O amor entre Djamila e Danier; um amor improvável, que nos recorda que não amamos quem queremos, ou devemos...
O amor pela grandiosa natureza que, com os seus sons e cores, harmoniza e ilumina estas lindas histórias de amor...
Mark Staniforth
At just ninety-six broad-spaced pages, Chingiz Aitmatov's 'Jamilia' wisps by at the speed of a Kyrgyz breeze. But for all its brevity, Aitmatov's narrative is so soaked in the richness of both his beloved homeland and the lives of the characters he has crafted within it, that it lingers longer than most novels twice or three times its size.
Sometimes, plot synopses cannot do a book justice, however hard you try. Suffice to say 'Jamelia' is an almost impossibly delicate tale of a love affair set a...more
"Nada disto nos explica, porém, que, algures na Ásia Central, um jovem tenha escrito, no início da segunda metade do século XX, uma história que é - juro-o - a mais bela história de amor do mundo. Uma história ao mesmo tempo breve e imensa. Uma história de amor onde não há uma palavra inútil, uma frase que não tenha eco no coração".
Um livro lindo! Feito à minha medida, porque adoro, perder-me, encontrar-me, emocionar-me para além do razoável, ser arrastada por um turbilhão de emoções… ser...more
Joe Whittington
This is a book I would probably never have been aware of, let alone picked up and read, had it not been chosen for the August book of the month at Waterstones. It really was a pleasant surprise.

It’s a joy to read and contains some beautiful description. It really is testament to how well written it is that it feels such a complete and fully realised story in so few pages. My colleagues and I agreed that it doesn’t need more than its humble 96 pages, and does a lot more with those pages than man...more
This is a beautiful novella of love, life and love for one's land. It describes the rich Kyrgyz culture during a specific time frame in recent history. It is said that Jamila made Chingiz Aitmatov well-known outside the Soviet Union. However after reading this I began to wonder why Aitmatov is not more widely read or known as he deserves to be.


Jamila is a coming of age story. It recounts the forbidden love between the narrator's sister-in-law Jamilya and...more
তাহসিন রেজা
জামিলা ! নাকি জামিলিয়া ! সঠিক উচ্চারণ আমার জানা নেই । রুশ ভাষা জানা এক ফেসবুক বন্ধু জানালো ওটা জামিলাই হবে ! কিরগিয লেখক চিঙ্গিয আইতমাতভের এক অবিস্মরণীয় চরিত্র জামিলা । লেখায় জাদুর কথা অনেক শুনেছি । দেখেছিও । কিন্তু জামিলা পড়ে যাকে বলে আমি স্পেলবাউন্ড । মন্ত্রমুগ্ধতা কাকে বলে হাড়ে হাড়ে বুঝলাম ।
গল্পের শুরু সাদামাটা ফ্রেমে বাঁধাই করা একটা ছবির বর্ণনা দিয়ে । শরতের আকাশে উড়তে থাকা মেঘদল, পাহাড়ের সারি, নিডল গ্লাস ঝোপে আকীর্ণ পথ । সদ্য বৃষ্টিতে ভেজা ওই পথে দুটো মানুষের প্রতিকৃতি, তাদের পায়ের...more
Emma Deplores Goodreads Censorship
At just 96 pages, or around 18,600 words, Jamilia isn’t even safely in novella territory; many would consider it a “novelette.” I was impressed to see the author fit what felt like a complete story into such a short work.

During World War II, most Kyrgyz men are off at the front. Meanwhile, fifteen-year-old Seit hauls grain to the nearest train station to aid in the war effort, accompanied by his sister-in-law, Jamilia, and a wounded soldier, Daniyar. Jamilia and Daniyar fall in love, and Seit is...more
BEFORE READING:Doesn't take place in the Caucasus but instead in Kyrgyzstan. Perhaps more of a love story to ones homeland rather than between people? I wish I could read a bit of the text somewhere...

There is a link to the entire book in the first comment below! I forgot and bought the book. What does that say about my head?!

AFTER READING: 4 stars. Prose that envelopes you in the place (Kyrgyzstan) and the emotions of the village people. It is about love, love between people, love for your home...more
Tal como é dito na sinopse, esta é uma história de amor "ao mesmo tempo breve e imensa".
É uma obra escrita magistralmente que, sendo curta, não há palavras vãs. Todo o ambiente descrito, a paisagem, o tempo, as gotas frias das nuvens e o ar seco da estepe em pleno Agosto pintam o amor subtil entre Djamila e Daniar.
Não é um livro óbvio. Não é para quem gosta de ler rápido. Não é para quem se atafulha de livros sem sentido.
É um livro para ser lido tal como se deve apreciar a vida: com cuidado, tem...more
در کانون ماجرا «جمیله»، دختر جوان قرقیز ‌با شوهر نه چندان موردعلاقه‌‌اش، «صادق»، که در ارتش شوروی خدمت می‌‌کند، قرار دارد. راوی مستقیم داستان، «سعید»، برادر ناتنی و پانزده ساله «صادق» است، که به ستایش زن برادر می‌پردازد، و از او حمایت می‌کند. «جمیله» با دیگر زنان روستا تفاوت دارد. او خودرای و خودآگاه و گاه گستاخ است، و به هیچ وجه حاضر نیست خود را فقط یک مخلوق آماده به خدمت بداند، لذا کارهای سخت را به شوهرش وامی‌‌گذارد. «جمیله» همیشه می‌‌داند چطور پسرک‌های سمج را از خود دور کند، تا اینکه «دانیار»...more
Shahzoda Nazarova
I must highlight that this epic love story has helped many runaway girls in Central Asia and in many occasions has probably saved many lifes since it's first publication in the Soviet Union. Chingiz Aitmatov supported many women by choosing Jamilia as a heroin of his novel, but unfortunately, this point was not greatly recognized by the critics so far.

I have read this short novel many times in Russian, but this is the first time I have read it in English and yet again with joy.

17 may...more
What starts out as a fairly ho-hum story, set in the Kyrgyz steppe during the war years, takes flight suddenly, miraculously, halfway in and transforms itself into something entirely different and beautiful. If Aitmatov had never written anything else, this story would still stand as his lasting monument. They even issued a postage stamp in Kyrgyzstan to commemmorate Jamilia, and no wonder!


"In the evening, as we rode through the ravine, I felt I was being transported to a different world. I li...more
I guess I am left with not much to say, Aragon has raised it above the Kipling's World's Most Beautiful Love Story. The story is narrated by Seit now a painter who looks back on childhood memories particularly the stirring and inspirational love story which have inspired him to be a painter. Seit's sister in law, Jamilia, is working in kolkhoz and destiny brings her and Daniyar together, they fall in love and elope. The romance inflames the desire of Seit to become a painter, he wants to capture...more
Nina Mielke
Ein so schönes Vorwort bereitet einen auf die Geschichte vor und man erwartet wirklich die schönste Liebesgeschichte der Welt.
Nein, meiner Meinung nach ist es nicht die schönste Liebesgeschichte der Welt. Es ist auch nicht die schönste Geschichte von T. Aitmatow.
Aber es ist eine ganz besondere Geschichte. Es ist die Geschichte von Dshamilja und Danijar.
Letztendlich dreht es sich in dem Buch nicht wirklich um die Liebe, zumindest im Großteil. Erst am Ende erkennt man die Liebe und die Zusammenhän...more
Keith Perena
I picked this up last week and was immediately immersed into rural Soviet Union. Mr. Aitmatov captures the Russian tradition of writing about the rural condition. Charged with a love story that finds it fruition late in the novel, it leaves readers wanting more.
In this short novella, Aitmatov uses a frame narrative technique to tell the story of a free-spirited young Kirghiz woman named Jamila, who is trapped in a loveless marriage to a soldier at the front and finds herself beginning to fall in love with another wounded soldier who has returned to their small village. These two budding lovers work together, along with her brother-in-law/narrator, at a collective farm harvesting food to send to the boys at the front. The story is presented as the refle...more
It is hailed as one of the most beautiful love stories in the world and I have a hard time really following this declaration. It is a beautiful love story - no doubt. The difficulties of closing the distance and overcoming the obstacles are beautifully described, but I can't really connect to Dshamilija nor the love of the boy for his sister-in-law.

What I like is the presented concept of love in general and I love the way Aitmatov paints the picture of the landscape. At some points it is a bit t...more
أقمار المسيري
فمنذ زمن بعيد وأنا احبك وحين كانت لا أعرفك ، كنت احبك وانتظرك وقد جئت كما لو كنت تعلم أنني أنتظرك ! رواية جميلة . جنكيز ايتماتوف



هكذا أحدث نفسي ، وكثيراً ما أحدث نفسي بأشياء ، ولكن لست دائماً أوفق بشيء ... وانا حتى الان لا اعرف اي لوحة سأرسم . ولكنني اعرف مقابل ذلك شيئاً واحداً ، أنني سأبحث . جنكيز ايتماتوف .المعلم الاول


وكنا نلتقي لأننا لا نستطيع إلا أن نلتقي . جنكيز ايتماتوف . شجيرتي في منديل أحمر

أقمار المسيري
فمنذ زمن بعيد وأنا احبك وحين كانت لا أعرفك ، كنت احبك وانتظرك وقد جئت كما لو كنت تعلم أنني أنتظرك ! رواية جميلة . جنكيز ايتماتوف



هكذا أحدث نفسي ، وكثيراً ما أحدث نفسي بأشياء ، ولكن لست دائماً أوفق بشيء ... وانا حتى الان لا اعرف اي لوحة سأرسم . ولكنني اعرف مقابل ذلك شيئاً واحداً ، أنني سأبحث . جنكيز ايتماتوف .المعلم الاول


وكنا نلتقي لأننا لا نستطيع إلا أن نلتقي . جنكيز ايتماتوف . شجيرتي في منديل أحمر

What a random little book this was. A first person narrative telling the story of a love affair that the narrator was not a part of was off putting and led to massive questions of unreliability that could not be resolved. Add to that the fact that the title should have been 'Daniyar' not 'Jamilia' as he was the one that caused the narrator's epiphany is what makes it wholly unrecommendable. The front cover and the blurb led to hope for a three dimensional female protagonist who jad something to...more
This is supposed to be one of the greatest love stories ever written. Hmm. Perhaps because it is so short there is no time for any real development of characters, place or situations. It feels as if it is merely a synopsis for a longer, more complex novel. Some of the imagery used is beautiful and yet the narrator so often resorts to 'it was indescribable' which frustrates. The narrator I also found to be irritating. Perhaps I have missed something; part of me hopes that I have missed something...more
As far as lovers go, I didn't think either Jamilia or Daniyar were much of a catch. What with Jamilia being a pretty typical male fantasy projection of 'sassy peasant hottie', and Daniyar having all the charisma of your average grain hauler. Same goes for Seit and his "paintings" which you can bet are dreadful. This was over-sentimental, simplistic and a little dull, but not awful awful, it's just something that would probably appeal to fans of Paulo Coehlo or Jack Vettriano (if you know what I'...more
The foreword by Louis Aragon praising this charming little novel as the most beautiful love story ever written raises high expectations. Unfortunately these high expectattions can't be met. The novel is a charming little love story, giving interesting insights in the tribal life in Kirgistan in the 40's, when the country had formally become a soviet republic but tribal and religeous sentiments were still strong. Nothing more, nothing less. The actual love story is rather ordinary.
This is the kind of book that is so good in translation you wonder how much better it would be if read in the original language. It will satisfy those who are looking for something different to read since it describes a place and time that few writers have attempted or been able to capture with the grace of Chingiz Aitmatov. Both the GoodReads and Amazon description incorrectly state that the novel takes place in the Caucuses. It takes place on the vast steppe of Central Asia.
Jan 04, 2012 Ajk rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: People who like beautiful stories of beautiful places
Shelves: turania, fiction
WW2-era Kyrgyzstan is a pretty interesting place. With all the healthy men at the front, the farm work is done by the wives and the younger brothers. The story is told from a younger brother's perspective of a trip taken with his sister-in-law. The landscape is the true protagonist; rural Kyrgyzstan is a beauty to behold.

It's a short story, and it can be found online, for free, pretty easily. I read it in a there-back ride on the metro. You should, too.
'If music be the food of love' and in this book 'sing on'. Seit is interesting as a narrator, since wilts he has at the outset a love of tradition beaten into him by his mother, there is within him a passionate romantic. This romantic wins the struggle to keep secret a forbidden love, but it leaks out in his drawings and eventually his painting of the two lovers Jamilia and Daniyar. There is a truthfulness of the characters; Jamilia is well drawn in words, her evolution from dutiful daughter in...more
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Chinghiz Aitmatov (Чингиз Айтматов, Tschingis Aitmatow, Čingiz Ajtmatov, Tšõngõz Ajtmatov,Cengiz Aytmatov) was an author who wrote in both Russian and Kyrgyz. He was the best known figure in Kyrgyzstan literature.

Aitmatov's parents were civil servants in Sheker. The name Chingiz is the same as the honorary title of Genghis Khan. In early childhood he wandered as a nomad with his family, as the Kyr...more
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