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Forty Rules of Love by Elif Shafak

This lyrical, imaginative novel by Elif Shafak, the bestselling author of The Bastard of Istanbul and the most widely read female writer in Turkey, unfolds in two parallel narratives. In the thirteenth century, the Sufi poet Rumi encounters his spiritual mentor, the infamous wandering dervish known as Shams of Tabriz, and is transformed from a successful but unhappy cleric into a committed mystic and advocate of love. In present day Massachusetts, an unhappy American housewife named Ella Rubenstein, inspired by Rumi's message of love, finds the courage to undertake her own transformation. Blending East and West, past and present, Shafak provides a compelling, dramatic, and exuberant account of how love works in the world.