What I’m reading: The Newlyweds by Nell Freudenberger

“It occurred to Amina that this scenario–herself and Carl, an unmarried man less than ten years older than she was, alone together int he stockroom–would be unthinkable to her parents, her aunts, and even her cousin Ghaniyah. She’d had the same realization in other situations: when she had skipped her dhuhr because there was nowhere private to pray at MediaWorks, and she felt too strange putting down a mat in the stockroom. Or when she’d drunk half a tall glass of Aunt Cathy’s sangria, before she had understood that it was made from wine. Because those things were unthinkable, there was a way in which they hadn’t happened: they had happened only to her American self, a person about whom her Bangladeshi self was blissfully unaware. She asked forgiveness for these errors in her prayers, but if she failed to mention them to her parents, she didn’t feel she was committing further sins.”


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