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J'AIME January 2021

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I N T H E N E W S Through The Cracks A PRIZE-WINNING PAKISTANI AUTHOR HAS CHOSEN TO PUBLISH HER NEW BOOK IN STAFFORDSHIRE. JENNY AMPHLETT FOUND OUT WHY A COUNTY IN THE MIDDLE OF A COUNTRY 4,000 MILES AWAY WAS SO APPEALING An award-winning Pakistani author has chosen to publish her latest book four thousand miles away - in Staffordshire. Bushra Naqi, who lives in the historic city of Lahore in the Punjab, was awarded the prestigious Patrus Bokhari Prize by the Government of Pakistan in honour of her literary contribution to the country. Her latest book, Through The Cracks, has been published by North Staffordshire Press and is being released simultaneously in the UK and Pakistan. Written in English rather than Urdu, it is a collection of short stories that give an insight into Pakistani culture and look at both traditional and unconventional relationships. “Pakistan is a very conservative country. Writing in English gives me more freedom,” she said. “The majority of people in Pakistan don’t understand or read English. The people who do read English are not the conservative types, so you can get away with a lot more things when you’re writing in English.” The 69-year-old says that living in what she calls a traditionally conservative society encouraged her to ‘become a reactionary’ and challenge a ‘stagnant and static’ way of life. The book, which Bushra says is partly autobiographical, gives snapshots into the lives of everyone from committed spinsters to women fleeing abusive relationships and from immigrants struggling to fit into their new country to people engaged in clandestine love affairs. “There’s no state censorship in Pakistan,” she said. “People do write whatever they want to in my country. I wanted to publish in the UK because I thought there would be a market for my work there too. “I found North Staffordshire Press on the internet and have found them very good to deal with, via emails and video calls.” Bushra chose the book’s title, Through The Cracks, as each of her stories gives an insight into a different person’s life. “We never really see people in their wholeness, we BUSHRA NAQI don’t get the whole picture, there’s always something concealed. I’m looking behind that,” she said. Bushra studied creative writing in New York after being introduced to classic English literature at a very young age by her father, who had studied at Cambridge University. “My father told us a lot about life in England,” said Bushra. “I was reading the English classics at a very young age - Dickens, Shakespeare, Jane Austen, the Brontes. It helped me to develop a love for literature and reading. “I started writing poetry when I was 19 and had my work published. I then found the medium of short stories more effective to articulate my observations about human nature. “My stories are partly autobiographical - I had all of these stories inside of me somewhere.” Through The Cracks is published by North Staffs Press priced £10. It can be ordered from all good book sellers using the ISBN code 978 1 8 380893 9 9. 46

OPEN FOR NEW RESIDENTS WE REMAIN COVID FREE We are a trusted, local family, dedicated to providing a truly personal service for those who need us Burials, Horse-drawn Funerals, Bespoke Funeral and pre-payment Funeral Plans available The perfect ‘Home from Home’ at Rosemary Lodge in Lichfield Rosemary Lodge Care Home for elderly ladies and gentlemen offers a level of care, community and comfort that is second to none. Situated a short way from the bustling City Centre of Lichfield and set in landscaped gardens, Rosemary Lodge is light, spacious and beautifully decorated, offering residents just the right combination of interest, activity and relaxation. It is a place that encourages residents to retain their independence and individuality whilst being fully supported to live a fulfilled and enjoyable life. Rosemary Lodge Care Home is a family run concern, and has been a highlyregarded part of the community for almost 30 years. Offering 24 hour care, our fully trained staff work together to communicate with residents and ensure personal care needs are met in a fully person-centred approach, thus building an important relationship of trust and friendship. Our two qualified chefs offer a nutritionally balanced and varied menu, (catering for any special dietary requirements) using fresh, locally sourced produce and served in a spacious dining room that offers views out towards the Orangery and to the gardens and fountain. The Orangery also creates a perfect space for residents, family and friends to meet up, chat, enjoy coffee and snacks and take advantage of the sunshine, no matter the season! The on-site hair and beauty salon also ensures that little bit of pampering is always available. All rooms are en-suite, and are designed to comfortably accommodate individuals and couples. There is full WiFi connectivity throughout to allow residents the opportunity of keeping in touch with family and friends through video link or FaceTime. Regular activities and entertainment such as movement-to music, musical theatre groups, pet therapy, pub lunches and visits to local events are regularly organised, but privacy and peace-andquiet is also ensured in this beautiful ‘home from home’. Our close proximity to Lichfield also means that shopping trips and community activities are just on the doorstep. Our commitment to offering just the right amount of care and support has led to an excellent reputation in the community and with the care professionals who work with us. We value our staff highly, and recognise that their care and commitment are a great part of our success. We also offer respite care, holiday stay and limited day care. To arrange a visit or to learn a little bit more about us, call Jane Evans, Registered Care Manager or Shirley Kent Administration Manager, please see contact details below. All-inclusive Funeral Packages for Cremation with no hidden costs Including Crematorium, Doctor and Religious/Non-religious Celebrant Simple - £2,300 Traditional - £2,650 (includes family car, service sheets and floral tribute) 16 - 20 North Street, Cannock, WS11 0BA 01543 529813 (Anytime) Visit our web and Facebook sites to see our reviews • CQC RATING GOOD Rosemary Lodge Residential Home 191 Walsall Road, Lichfield. Staffs. WS13 8AQ. For more information please contact Jane Evans (Registered Care Manager) or Shirley Kent (Administration Manager). 01543 415223 - Email:

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