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480 pages, ebook
First published November 12, 2019
If I were a man, I would give my grief a purpose, and to the sword. I would fight for the sake of my Empire. But I am only a widow, and I have nothing to offer beyond my blood.
“Lonely, Jihan had called him. But Arwa could only look at him and think of his vulnerable neck, his wrists, the moonlight on him and think, Starving, he is starving.”
“When you strip everything away, Arwa thought, there is nothing in me but raw feeling: rage pulsing free like the blood of a thing unskinned.
I have to be more than this.“
“I look at you, Zahir, I speak to you and I know you and I hunger.”
“But often he would look at Arwa, and she would get up, and the two of them would walk off into the gray light, stand very close, and not think about hunger.”
“She recognized the yearning now. It was hunger for a thing she had never had.”
“I deserve little. I should be grateful for what I have. But whatever I deserve—I do not want it.”
She did not say, I want more. He understood.
I am grief, and I speak for the dead.