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A moving story of love and redemption set in Trinidad, that exposes the fault lines in Indo-Muslim culture, as it explores three generations of a family who move from being indentured labourers to wealthy business owners.
The Yard is a large compound in the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago housing six familiesÃ‘Father Khalid, his four siblings and their widowed mother Sakina. Behrooz, an orphan who cannot remember his past, is brought to The Yard, when the old woman with whom he has sought shelter dies. Here, he struggles to belong. Father Khalid is kindhearted, but other family members are guarded about the outsider in their midst. They contend that Behrooz will betray the family by forging a clandestine relationship with his adoptive sister, Maya, a willful and rebellious girl who was not romantically forbidden to him under Islamic law.
Two loners, Behrooz and Maya form a childish alliance and later, struggle with a physical attraction. After they share a night of adolescent tenderness, Maya, fearing retribution, flees to London where she pursues her artistic talent in defiance of her culture. Behrooz painstakingly rebuilds his life and marries another. When tragedy strikes, Maya returns to her childhood home. There, she and Behrooz must face up to old demons. Can their love endure? Even after Maya is dealt the most ‘righteous’ blow of all?
Aliyyah Eniath is a director at Safari Publications, a magazine publishing house based in Trinidad and Tobago. She writes from the perspective of East Indians whose forefathers were brought to Trinidad from India through the British colonial indentureship scheme in 1845.