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Malam Seribu Jahanam

Book / Novel

Malam Seribu Jahanam

by Intan Paramaditha

Format: Paperback, Indonesian
362 page(s)
ISBN/ISBN13: /9786020671444
Published Jun 01, 2023 by Gramedia Pustaka Utama

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The second novel by Intan Paramaditha.

Revolution always begins with the ugly stepsister. It was not known what lurked in the heart of our sister, who was neither ugly nor revolutionary, when she strapped a bomb to her waist and detonated herself.

In 1991, Dutch-educated Muslim Sumatran matriarch Hajjah Victoria binti Haji Tjek Sun foretold the destiny of her granddaughters: Mutiara the oldest will take care of the family; Maya the middle sister would travel the world; and Annisa the youngest would be a bride. When Annisa and her family killed themselves in a suicide bombing attack two decades later, Mutiara was in a Jakarta hospital caring for her dying father, and Maya, hiding with her secret lover in New York, discovered the truth too late. Bombs exploded in two churches and a community center where Muslim trans women gathered to welcome Ramadan.

Shattered and humiliated, the surviving sisters attempted to hold on to what they thought they had; faith for Mutiara, and for Maya, a novel about her grandmother’s story with a vanished woman. They turned to the past to see where Annisa took the wrong turn, or perhaps, where they had left her. They traced memories of their family, including Victoria’s House and everything within it: the well, the kuntilanak ghost with a nail in her head, the exorcism of their mother, and Victoria herself, who was thought to have shapeshifting powers.

As Mutiara and Maya grappled with guilt and regret, another sister appeared.

Blending the gothic syle, Southeast Asian myths, and Islamic stories, Malam Seribu Jahanam is a dark tale about remorse, shame, secrets, and ghosts. It is a meditation of faith, ruptures in the middle class culture, and the limits of sisterhood.1

  1. Newsletter #22 – Intan Paramaditha 

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