By Agmall Sarwari

THE MAN WHO would come to be known as Baba leaves his mulberry farm in war-torn Afghanistan to end up in Sweden, at the artificial silk factory in Borås. But when the years, the marginalisation and the backbreaking work start taking their toll on his body, Baba is powerless to control the rage, like black oil, that shoots up its tentacles inside of him and explodes in front of his children.

ASAD – THE ELDEST son, university educated and a doctor – must find out who Baba is and what he has sacrificed, so that he can find himself and become the kind of father he always yearned for.

THIS IS A story about the people who, despite everything, choose to run, and why. About those who have given up, and those whom society has given up on. But also about our bodies as carriers of society’s brutalities.

First published by Wahlström & Widstrand, Sweden 2024

Sweden, Wahlström & Widstrand

Syria, Ninawa for Publishing

“The Silkworm is an impressive, well-written debut novel, and a brilliant example of contemporary high literature that through style and form is made available to a broad readership.”
BTJ, Sweden

“This is a demonstration of empathy. The son desires not to unmask his father, but to understand him. Sarwari elegantly portrays this by deploying equal parts introspection and recollection… The novel goes beyond simplistic analyses and characters, evoking the very best of Sweden’s tradition of working-class literature.”
Agnes Lidbeck, Göteborgsposten, Sweden

“Extremely well-written, incredibly beautiful language.”
Johan Unengen, TV4 Nyhetsmorgon, Sweden

The Silkworm is an impressive debut about migration as potential for growth. […] It is interesting to study Agmall Sarwari’s storytelling and portrayal of a family.” 
Nina Asarnoj, Swedish Radio, Sweden