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Clifton Bridge:: Stories of Inncocence and Experience from Pakistan Paperback – 1 Mar 2013

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Product details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins India (1 Mar. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9350296187
  • ISBN-13: 978-9350296189
  • Product Dimensions: 19.6 x 13 x 1.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,033,256 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

A Talibanized mujahideens love child with his Christian lover is being brought up by a Hindu vegetable vendor. A globetrotting professor and a mushaira-loving Urdu editor cope with cultural and ideological barriers in a tale of star-crossed lovers. The first and second wives of a businessman hatch a diabolic plot to prevent their husband from taking a new wife. A painters unusual bond with his dead mother plays havoc with his personal life. In Irshad Kadirs debut collection of stories, these and other tales, set in modern Pakistan, represent the diversified social cluster of the country and puncture the unidimensional idea of it in the non-Pakistani imagination. These tales explore themes of ambition, iniquity and individual yearnings. The characters range from feudal landowners and conscience-stricken Taliban to metropolitan beggars, frustrated housewives and women defiantly striking out on their own. Violence in pastoral surroundings, a providential encounter on the Net or in a Victorian market, the vagaries of an unequal love bond or a rare moment in a Karachi slum Clifton Bridge: Stories of Innocence and Experience from Pakistan offers a fascinating glimpse into contemporary Pakistani society and of the people who inhabit it.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I enjoyed Clifton Bridge and was always surprised at the conclusion of each story. I look forward to more of these....
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 1 review
Interesting short stories 26 Nov. 2014
By Martina A. Nicolls - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
Clifton Bridge: stories of innocence and experience from Pakistan is a collection of 10 tales set in contemporary Pakistan.

Characters from all walks of life – from beggars to diplomats – are depicted in the stories covering a wide cross-section of places and times. Set in Karachi, two wives make a pact when their husband takes a third and younger wife in the first story, All in the Family. Clifton Bridge, set in Karachi, is about the sale of kidneys to an organ transplant mafia. Diva is an interesting story of Sultana, the dreamer married to Khalid with a son, whose performances drew audiences from around the world. The loneliness of travel takes its toll, and she’d retreat from the world after her tours – once for almost three months. One event was called the greatest musical on earth.

Queen’s Garden is my favourite. It tells of the vegetable stall called Queen’s Garden near where Amanullah and Maria would regularly meet. After their separation, Maria’s pregnancy is not wanted. She decides to leave the newborn child “amidst a heap of cauliflowers” where she knows that the vegetable vendor, Krishnan, will find and care for the baby. Attached to the baby’s ankle is a tag with the writing: Maria Fernandes; father unknown, “Krishnanji, please keep the baby for his father. You know him.” Krishnan was Hindu, the baby’s mother was Christian, but the father, whom he does know, was Muslim. Krishnan knows what he has to do.

Two is an Odd Number is about an “unusual couple.” Pregnancy was unexpected, but ended in a miscarriage. “Each blamed the other. She went home to recuperate and never returned. He was hostile, not wanting her back. Divorce came as a relief.” But over time, they still pined for each other.

Although not connected, the stories have common themes: love, expectations, ambition, disillusionment, and the quest for “something more” in life. Well told, with interesting twists of fate, the collection provides a brief insight into different lives and uncommon relationships.
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