Residue is that which remains in us and allows us to regrow, as we move across national borders and move on from events. Named for the revolutionary Trotsky by a missing communist father he never saw, Leon Ali is a Kashmiri born in Britain and brought up by a single mother in Delhi. Keya Raina is a Kashmiri scholar of exile, an insecure immigrant, who collects other peoples stories. Marked by the oppressive history of Kashmir, they meet in Berlin, the city of Cold War partitions and begin a journey of discovery, which reveals to them the story of Shula Farid, the bohemian wife of a staid Bengali diplomat. Through their travels, these two young Kashmiris outside Kashmir find startling truths about themselves in the midst of unwitting identities and multiple belongings-the residue of shared human emotions.
A riveting exploration of mobility and affinity across the borders of nation and faith, Residue provides fascinating glimpses of class-stratified urban India, divided Berlin and complications of identity in England. It is a remarkable novel about divided lands and fortress continents, lines inked in blood and memory and the absences they create in peoples lives and imaginations.