AHMED AND THE OLD LADY by Jon Godden

AHMED AND THE OLD LADY

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Jon Godden's last two stories dealt with gentlewomanly victimization; now the possibility is always there, just to prick your curiosity along with the blue butterfly hatpin worn on the leghorn of Leah Harding, an 80-year-old woman, inured by more than her age against fear. Her dull husband long dead and only a grandson as an equally indifferent reminder of him, Leah decides to make the ascent from Kashmir up that Pass--14,000 feet up, with only a canny, jaunty, indispensable retainer, Ahmed, and some ponymen. Leah is looking for more time on earth and to see more of it and she pays no mind to the warnings of others including a missionary couple--that Ahmed may compound the natural dangers of the trip. Indeed he has a record as a murderer, footpadding behind him. . . . The time is 1943 and Miss Godden knows India as well as her sister Rumer although she devotes herself to worldlier manifestations. They are achieved with a certain grace and gallantry and are enjoyed by all those other memsahibs during a well-spent evening.

Pub Date: March 1st, 1976
Publisher: Knopf