Beyond the Book: Background information when reading The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears

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The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears

A Novel

by Dinaw Mengestu

The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears
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  • First Published:
    Mar 2007, 240 pages
    Feb 2008, 240 pages

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  • The Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia (historically known as Abyssinia) is located in east Africa, on the "Horn of Africa" (map). Once an important trade route due to its location on the Red Sea, it has been landlocked since 1993 when the province of Eritrea gained independence. It is the oldest independent country in Africa and is unique in that it was never colonized; the second-oldest official Christian nation (after Armenia) and one of the 51 original members of the United Nations. Its capital is Addis Ababa. With a landmass a little over twice the size of Texas and a population of about 75 million, it is the third most populous country in Africa (after Nigeria and Egypt) and the 16th most populous in the world.

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