Women's Fiction. View subjects in detail. ISBN: The Wish Maker. Publication Date: Extent: pages.
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The Book:. Zaki Shirazi returns to Lahore to celebrate the wedding of his cousin and childhood companion Samar Api who has finally, it seems, found her Amitabh.
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Home is not what it used to be; Musharraf is in power, there has been a boom, and Lahore seems to have seen 'too much too soon'. Zaki's estrangement, amidst the flurry of wedding preparations in the house he grew up in, takes him back to his past: his childhood as a fatherless boy growing up in a household of outspoken women, and his and Samar's intertwined journeys from youth to adulthood.
As children, they often attended dangerous political protests with Zaki's journalist mother. Surrounded by the mysterious talk of adults, only Zaki seemed to share his older cousin's yearning for the perfect world. Inspired by American soaps and Bollywood films that they watched together, their world held the promise of all sorts of forbidden love. Then, when Zaki supports one of Samar's romantic schemes, the family suffers the disastrous consequences. But as his fate diverges from Samar's, he comes to understand the world around him better, and to cherish the bonds that survive the tugs of convention, time and history.
The Wish Maker
Ali Sethi was born in Lahore in and grew up there. In he left to attend college in the United States and graduated in He has since written reviews and articles for several publications, local and international, and has co-produced and narrated a documentary on student politics in Pakistan. He lived in New York City for a year and now lives in Lahore where he is making music.
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Through three generations of a Lahore family, Sethi charts the tumults within Pakistani political and social life since partition in , including the regular vacillations between military rule and feeble attempts at democracy. On the flip side, almost as if it to make a statement, the tone is very female oriented. The protagonist is simply a spectator in a world where he is raised and supported by women. Yet, disappointingly, it is again, a novel that is written for a Western audience.
The thoughts are censored and subdued; there is no proof of the abuse that women have to deal with in every sphere, no obstacles that they face as professionals, as wives, as daughters. Overall it is typical in the sense of South East Asian nostalgia, as our prose and poetry is often arching its neck backward to catch the fleeting past with its peripherals.
For a debut novel, it is not too indecent an effort. However, English literature from Pakistan will always have a lot at stake as the audience and the expectation to deliver the culture, times and region one has set out to represent, responsibly and honestly, is twofold. The writer is a Multimedia Producer at Dawn.
Pheminist hippie. Promoter of hobo chic. The views expressed by this writer and commenters below do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Dawn Media Group. Interesting review, thanks! I bought this book after reading The Kite Runner Khaled Hosseini few years ago, as Hosseini himself said this book brings Pakistani life to life. I've tried reading it a couple of times, but never got past the first chapters. I want to read it to learn more about everyday life in Pakistan. How does this compare with Kamila Shamsie's works? I've read Manto, but that is, of course, from a different time.
Thanks in advance! Some disclosures up front - I'm not a regular visitor and this is the first review I've read by Ms Khursheed. I have not read the book or anything else by Ali Sethi. As a piece of writing however, this is terrible. Sentences are clumsily constructed - "a possible result of having ones parents being masters of juggling the spotlight"??
The audience and expectation is twofold? There are simple but one hopes to the reviewer embarrassing errors - our part of the world is more commonly known as South Asia not South East Asia which is usually Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines In short, Ms Khursheed is clearly unqualified to review anyone's writing. He lived in New York City for a year and now lives in Lahore, where he is making music.
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