The Forty Rules of Love
On Sale: February 18, 2010
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An American housewife is transformed by an intriguing
manuscript about the Sufi mystic poet Rumi
In this lyrical, exuberant follow-up to her 2007 novel, The
Bastard of Istanbul, acclaimed Turkish author Elif Shafak
unfolds two tantalizing parallel narratives- one
contemporary and the other set in the thirteenth century,
when Rumi encountered his spiritual mentor, the whirling
dervish known as Shams of Tabriz-that together incarnate
the poet's timeless message of love.
Ella Rubenstein is forty years old and unhappily married
when she takes a job as a reader for a literary agent. Her
first assignment is to read and report on Sweet Blasphemy,
a novel written by a man named Aziz Zahara. Ella is
mesmerized by his tale of Shams's search for Rumi and the
dervish's role in transforming the successful but unhappy
cleric into a committed mystic, passionate poet, and
advocate of love. She is also taken with Shams's lessons,
or rules, that offer insight into an ancient philosophy
based on the unity of all people and religions, and the
presence of love in each and every one of us. As she reads
on, she realizes that Rumi's story mirÂrors her own and that
Zahara-like Shams-has come to set her free.
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