Flowers in Flames
Khamila narrates her experience as a young woman living in Sur, a city which quickly transforms from a rich trading centre into a place of fear and murder at the hands of extremist oppressors. Home to a mixed community of Muslims, Copts, Christians, Jews, Buddhists, Indians, Europeans and Africans, Sur is plunged into turmoil by an extremist revolution orchestrated by the Righteous one. An obscure figure, the Righteous One is drawing followers from the poor and discontented to his jihad. Sur and all its communities represent the camp of apostasy and must be defeated. The city begins to prepare itself for the onslaught. Together with other young women, Khamila is led away to a house for female captives. Kept in seclusion and guarded by eunuchs, these women are instructed in the new faith and readied for marriage and sexual servitude.