A challenging and often very moving mix of (auto)biography, philosophy and cultural history, which uses the story of Kureishi's own (very interesting) family to reflect a changing world and by implication the ongoing search for identity. As someone who is not Kureishi's greatest fan ("The Buddha of Suburbia" in particular passed me by), I was surprised at how effective the honest, direct and straightforward style he adopts here was in making this a very absorbing read. Kureishi is convincing both in his portrayal of the domestic front, with the debilitating effects of sibling rivalry, and on the wider sociopolitical stage, as he contrasts the India/Pakistan his parents knew, with its rigid religious and family structures, ambitions and expectations, with his own experiences growing up in an increasingly liberal Britain and shows how that contrast has helped to shape his own outlook.
I really enjoyed this book. The story of Mr. Kureishi's father life interchanging with his own life story - tells us a lot about how his father's childhood affected not only his father's life but also his own. Excellent also for those looking for an insight into cross cultural issues and about real life. An easy read.