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4.3 out of 5 stars29
4.3 out of 5 stars
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on 18 January 2013
...this collection of short stories by this author. I was left wanting to read more about each story and its characters by the end!. Each story could and really ought to have been novels. Daniyal Mueenuddin writes so beautifully and with sensitivity. Its amazing how acute his depictions are of each character. The dialogue so sophisticated where required. I'm v. impressed and feel a little sad as its finished and I cant seem to find any other books by him on amazon.
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on 30 May 2009
Absoltuley beautiful, enchanting, and amazingly original. Every character touches the heart. Probably the best stories I have ever read. There is a touch of genius here.
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on 2 July 2009
It's wise and humane, beautifully written and offers a deep insight on Pakistan. I can't remember the last time I read something as beautiful.
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on 21 October 2013
This collection of short stories, set in and around modern day Lahore, captures the very different experiences of rich land-owning Pakistanis and poor, impoverished indentured servants. Each story traces events particular to one individual. Several end unexpectedly, leaving the reader to ponder on the - mostly unhappy - life experiences and behaviours of the main characters. The book evokes the inner thoughts and lives of the characters and presents an intriguing set of insights into the choices and life chances of the better off, and haphazardness of the lot of those born into the lower echelons of Pakistani society. The stories are linked by a common thread, but each stands alone. It was an interesting book, worth reading but as other reviewers have said, hard to say you enjoyed it due to the sad or pitiful twists and turns that befell so many of the characters.
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on 9 January 2013
These linked short stories are touching, funny and brutal, and the last one in the collection, 'A Spoiled Man', almost unbearably sad - one of the saddest short stories I have ever read.. The story set in Paris does not work so well, it feels contrived. the effect is dislocating. Still, the collection is beautifully written, well worth reading.
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on 1 May 2014
I am in the process of reading this book and am pleased by the feel of the writing, such that I am sorry that I cannot trace other books by the same author.
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on 18 May 2010
Absorbing, emotional and beautifully written. A series of short stories but the main characters are interlinked throughout.
A sumptuous treat of a book
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on 25 August 2011
Excellent from A to Z. And why use at least 20 words, when 5 are enough? This is a waste of energy and scorns succinct language.
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on 13 February 2010
This is a collection of eight linked short stories which describe the overlapping worlds of an extended Pakistani family of landowners. These are stories of the servants and dependants in the worlds of Mr K.K Harouni's overflowing household in Lahore and the peasants on his estates, as well as the parallel worlds of his industrialist relations who have distanced themselves from their feudal past.

The characters in these stories confront the advantages and constraints of their situations, the dissolution of old ways and the associated shock of change. Meet Lily, the socialite who, tired of endless parties, marries a young landlord in an attempt to reinvent herself. There is Nawabdin, the electrician whose light-fingered ingenuity enables him to support his 12 daughters until he loses almost everything. Meet, too, the aged labourer who earns enough money to marry but when his wife disappears shortly afterwards is suspected of murder.

There are no happy stories here: the rich are selfish and shallow, the poor trying hard to survive. And yet the tragedy is leavened, at times, with humour. These stories with their diverse characters, their attempts at love, occasional triumphs, and misunderstandings illustrate the complexities of a class and culture which is in transition.

Jennifer Cameron-Smith
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on 3 April 2015
Really good. Short stories all linked, although not obviously. Can read it solely as short stories.
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