Hannah Tucker
August 04, 2006 at 04:00 AM EDT

In Omeara, a Southeast Asian village, the ”shriek of rain,” the ”chatter and thump” of military helicopters, and the ”swelling cacophony” of gunfire all begin to blur. Yet Arun, a 21-year-old who leaves an unnamed country’s prosperous North to teach in the war-torn South, detects ”a terrible silence” behind the din. Arun is shocked to learn that his outspoken lover, Anjani, and her family may be connected to terrorists, and then uncovers secrets in his own past that leave him empathizing with insurgents. Neil Bissoondath can be overly verbose, but his message in Clamor of the Night is terse and powerful.

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