Smoke Portrait by Trilby Kent

Smoke Portrait

Trilby Kent

A tender love story between two people separated by continents and in contact through an accident and a series of letters. One is a strong-willed young woman unable to cope with the restrictions of the British Raj in colonial Sri Lanka. And the other is a teenager coming to terms with his humanity, through a flirtation with fascism. This is a story about conflict, and reconciliation, and the consequences of the very least of actions.

Extract

She watched the swift draw frantic circles overhead, skimming the vaulted ceiling with its tiny wings, ricocheting from one end of the building to the other and back again without so much as brishing the peeling plaster. Had it been in here before she entered, nestling in an invisible crevice and stirred by the sound of the door? Or had it swooped in behind her, lured by the draight and the sparkling glass? Glen imagined its heart thumping, its small brain struggling to fathom the difference between the air it flew in and the blue sky so clearly visible beyond the transparent barrier, and she marvelled at the cruelty of its situation.

Parallels
  • A Life Apart by Neel Mukherjee
  • The Jewel in the Crown by Paul Scott
  • A Passage to India by EM Forster

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