I don't read buku cerita Melayu that much, let alone romance novels, so there must be a very particular reason why I read this book... but I'll get to that point a little later. Of the three words that make the title of this novel, I only knew the one in the middle. I had to look up what the other two meant... very humbling indeed.
Lentera is the Malay name for a lamp or lantern with an external casing of glass or glass windows. Albaicin is a district in the city of Granada, Spain. Also spelled Albaizin, this place is the old Arab-Moorish quarter of the historical city that is more well-known for the beautiful palace of Alhambra.
The novel tells the story of a young man from the small town of Mersing in Johor, who decides to travel to faraway Europe to help his friend of Arab-Morrocan descent whom he met while studying at UIA, set up an Islamic pre-school in Albaicin, Granada. He lives with his friend's family and gets to know the other relatives and also the friendly local Muslim community. But life as a Muslim in a Christian country is not without its challenges. The book tells the story of these challenges and how the young man tries his best to overcome them using the knowledge he has gained from his education and religious upbringing. Along the way, he meets the beautiful Leyla Zulaikha... but at the same time is reminded of the sweet and shy Nur Karmila from his kampung.
|The Alhambra Palace in Granada with a view of Albaicin in the background on the right.|
|Within the Alhambra compound...|
It took me quite a while to finish reading this book, mainly because it is not the type of book that forms my area of reading interest. But finish it I did, and I needed to, because the author may soon be asking me of my opinion of it.
Lentera Cinta Albaicin is the debut novel from writer Mazny M.R. The author is my niece. She is the first novelist in the family. I am perhaps, the only other family member who has any literary or writing interest. I only write in blogs but my niece has already achieved her dream of having her first fiction effort out in print. Way to go, Mazny. Keep on writing...
Book title : Lentera Cinta Albaicin
Author : Mazny M.R.
Pages : 506
Genre : Novel Tarbiah Dewasa
Publisher : Galeri Ilmu Sdn Bhd