From the emotional and hard-hitting personal drama of domestic family life, the mysterious and thrilling escapades of a detective trying to find his beloved, to the fantastical mission of a family doing all that they can to save the world with the help of extraterrestrial life. This collection of novels by Gulsifat Shahidi offers three stories for enjoyers of three uniquely different genres, all tied together by the author’s cherished theme of the importance of ‘family’ and ‘love’.
The novel ‘Akhriman: Lord of Darkness’ explores the life of a boy and his family struggling under the tyrannical control of their father, who under the encouragement of the boy’s grandmother and the patriarchal society of Tajikistan that surrounds them, has been allowed to torment and hurt not only his family, but the lives of many women around him, leading some to eventually take their own lives due to the stress, ridicule and shame inflicted upon them.
In ‘Labyrinth of Loneliness’ a young woman paints alone, surrounded by concrete walls on all sides, with no apparent way to escape. This woman is the childhood friend of our secondary protagonist, a male detective trying to figure out the mystery behind his friend’s sudden disappearance, a case that sees him slowly uncovering the dark secrets behind the culprit of her kidnapping, and a story that brings the two closer than ever before.
How would a pacifistic alien race save a planet ravaged by constant greed and violence? That is the question ‘Protect Me’ tackles, a story that sees a mother struggle with her daughter’s sleepwalking condition, only to find out that the young girl has been ‘chosen’ by otherworldly beings to make the world a better place, and so the girl and her family do their best to help those around them, but there are those who want to use her alien power for their own selfish needs.


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LABYRINTHS OF LONELINESS – How to escape from the labyrinths of destiny
AKHRIMAN – Lord of Darkness
collection by Gulsifat Shakhidi



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