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Broken Verses [Paperback]

Kamila Shamsie
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
Price: 8.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

17 April 2006
Fourteen years ago Aasmaani's mother Samina, a blazing beauty and fearless activist, walked out of her house and was never seen again. Aasmaani refuses to believe she is dead and still dreams of her glorious return. Now grown up and living in Karachi, Aasmaani receives what could be the longed-for proof that her mother is still alive. As she comes closer to the truth she is also irresistibly drawn to Ed, her ally and sparring partner, and the only person who can understand the profound hurt - and the profound love - that drives her.

Frequently Bought Together

Broken Verses + Kartography + Salt and Saffron
Price For All Three: 24.07

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  • Kartography 6.99
  • Salt and Saffron 8.09

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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC; New edition edition (17 April 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0747578931
  • ISBN-13: 978-0747578932
  • Product Dimensions: 12.8 x 19.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 369,231 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Kamila Shamsie was born in 1973 in Pakistan. She is the author of four previous novels: In the City by the Sea, Kartography (both shortlisted for the John Llewellyn Rhys Prize), Salt and Saffron and Broken Verses. In 1999 she received the Prime Minister's Award for Literature and in 2004 the Patras Bokhari Award - both awarded by the Pakistan Academy of Letters. Her latest novel, Burnt Shadows, was shortlisted for the 2009 Orange Prize. Kamila Shamsie lives in London.

(Photo credit: Mark Pringle)

Product Description


‘A compassionate book, which intelligently discusses the dilemmas of educated woman in Pakistan’ -- Joanna Kavenna, Times Literary Supplement

‘Her characters are all highly articulate, juggling, twisting and subverting language with breathtaking ease’ -- Helen Brown, Daily Telegraph

‘The plot gallops along, ensuring a gripping read’ -- Independent

From the Publisher

A spellbinding love story set in 80’s Pakistan. Kamila has been chosen as one of Orange's 21 writers for the 21st century - she is a regular writer for the Guardian.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Beautiful Reading Experience 13 July 2005
Shamsie's 4th novel, published by Bloomsbury in 2005, is a splendid one, a beautiful read, and a continuation and development of Shamsie's distinctive and charming writing voice.
Shamsie is a Pakistani author, who consistently presents Pakistani society as a highly complex, attractive, mind-boggling, sophisticated society, cramed with distinctive and memorable characters.
The engaging and intelligent protagonist of Broken Verses, Aasmaani, is not unlike the protagonist of Kartography (Shamsie's 3rd novel), Raheen, in her wit, emotional independence, fierce loyalties, wry humour, privileged social status.
The storyline is based on Aasmaani not being able to know whether her mother and her mother's soulmate and lover, called The Poet, are truly dead. The plot is simple but intriguing, painted in broad brushstrokes but filled with wonderful complexities and nuances and intricacies. However, whatever the plot, I would have relished every page of this novel because Shamsie's language is so rich, so quick-witted and charming, her characters have such charisma, and the sentences flow so beautifully, unfolding the thoughts in the reader's mind with graceful rhythm. It is a tremendous piece of writing, the authorial consciousness and self-awareness knife-sharp, the verse sparkling in brilliance.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars complex and compelling 1 Oct 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book reveals Kamila Shamsie's depth as a truly "poetic" writer, in the widest sense of the word. She draws you subtley into the confused and painful world of Aasmaani, the central character, gradually revealing the damage of Aasmani's childhood and young experiences. She demonstrates the enormous effect the lives of parents have upon their children. As I read, I felt myself entering Aasmaani's mind and experiences, feeling with her the desperation, the sense of utter confusion and loss. This is skillfully done, and the revelations towards the end are hidden enough in the trail that they aren't predicatable.. At the same time, she reveals what it is to be an educated woman in modern Pakistan, and the ways in which the bigger cultural picture of our country impacts on individual lives. Closing the last page, I was left admiring Shamsie's considerable story telling talent, and would defintely recommend this book.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Broken Verses - Poignant page turner 5 April 2007
By A. Hope
I have read two others of Kamila Shamsie's novels and really enjoyed them, but this is my favourite of the three. This is both a page turner, and a beautifully written, poignant exammination of loss and how it is we remember those we have lost. Like Salt and Saffron a novel I read not long ago, it shows us a realistic modern Pakistan that we may not always get to see or hear about - and introduces us to the different people that live and work there.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I've wanted to read this for some time ... 22 July 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
... and it didn't disappoint.

There was a subtlety about the writing that I really enjoyed and I liked the way that the heroine reached a growing acceptance of things past. Some of her lack of forgiveness saddened me at times but none the less, a great read and one to pass around friends, too.
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