Moving from present-day Scotland to the court of the Tsar, The Kindness of Enemies is an epic of love and betrayal, reconciliation and war. Natasha is researching the life of Imam Shamil, a nineteenth-century warrior who battled to defend the Caucasus against Russian invasion. She uncovers a story of bravery and loss, and of captives traded between wild mountain hideouts and the refined court of the Tsar. The tale of Shamil and his lost son comes shockingly to life when Natasha realises that her star student, Oz, is descended from the warrior. Quickly, she becomes drawn to him, and to the alluring world of his family. But Natasha soon discovers she is not the only one with an interest in Oz, and in what he might be hiding. As suspicion around him intensifies, Natasha realises everything she values stands in jeopardy.
Leila Aboulela was born in Cairo and grew up in Khartoum. All three of her previous novels, The Translator, Minaret and Lyrics Alley, were longlisted for the Orange Prize. Lyrics Alley won Novel of the Year at the Scottish Book Awards and was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers' Prize, while Aboulela's collection of short fiction, Coloured Lights, won the Caine Prize. She lives in Aberdeen. www.leila-aboulela.com/ www.facebook.com/pages/Leila-Aboulela-Official/134742056629289