In her critically acclaimed second novel, Salt and Saffron (), Kamila Shamsie followed an idealistic young Pakistani woman as she discovered that class. Impassioned and touching, KARTOGRAPHY is a love song to Karachi. In her extraordinary new novel, Kamila Shamsie shows us that whatever happens in the . The trauma of war is typically gauged by loss of lives and property, not broken hearts, but the microcosm is often as powerful an indicator of loss.

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Map and itinerary are not at the opposite poles of experience, as de Certeau has it, but the itinerary retakes the territory the map has supposedly frozen in time and space: On the one hand, it’s a story about love and friendships and growing up.

Kartography by Kamila Shamsie

For years Shamsie spent equal amounts of time in London and Karachi, while also occasionally teaching creative writing at Hamilton College in New York State. I was going to give this a 4, but then had to settle for a 3. However, Raheen is fiercely loyal and naively blinkered and she resents Karim’s need to map their city, his need to name its streets and to expand the privileged world they know.

Every character speaks with arch self-consciousness, meaning Shamsie clearly could not separate her own voice from that of her characters. There are no discussion topics on this book yet. While this book easily runs the risk of being dismissed as a slow book, it is the element of ‘suspense’ that drives you to move forward in this book. Or, more to the point, which stories have you deliberately turned away from, Ra, and why? Worst of all, the book continues for odd pages after this big climax.

The most glaring offender is the banter between the four teenagers. I think if you are from a city that goes through chaos like Karachi does – then this book will sing to you. Shamsie does a decent job in driving home the irrational and fatal grasp of ethnic struggles, stressing that no one – no matter how upright – is immune from the madness of war.


Maybe one precocious 13 year old could make jokes about kinky communist parties, but 4 precocious 13 year olds infusing their comments with casual socio-political references and scathing wit was a bit excessive.

One thing is for sure, as a native, Kamila Shamsie is in love with her city and manages to invoke in the reader a longing to experience the vibrant life there. Well, not to the extent to what the main characters in these novel went through but closer to that.

She had all the rights to be angry with her father but I personally believe her reaction was exaggerated. Their winter holidays have just started and their plans of spending their days roaming the city with two other close friends, Zia and Sonia, are being spoiled by their parents.

Will the parents live up to the expectations of their children? This in itself covers a lot of issues such as ethnic, religious and socio-economic prejudices, changing history, redemption, forgiveness, whether one big consequential action defines a person, as well as the conc I remembered loving the book when I read it a few years ago.

Shamsie skilfully serves the historical facts, which are mostly the background shadows for the story of xhamsie bubble-contained kiddos. How the roads and places never stopped being a part of every page. May 31, Debbie rated it really liked it Shelves: But she didn’t shaamsie it four months ago?! All you want is to know what happens to a book’s main characters.

Why did those bloody Muhajirs have to go and form a political group? An Interview with Kamila Shamsie. Karachi, alive and breathing, is perhaps the most vivid character in the novel; and the smells and sounds of Karachi stay with you long after you finish the story. Books by Kamila Shamsie. I was left not understanding at all what happened shhamsie the main characters in the book.

The reasons behind the broken engagements, as well as the sequence in which they happened remains unknown to both Raheen and Karim, and complicates their relationship when hidden truths emerge. How can I let one of them bear my children?

The catalyst appears shxmsie be an informal lesson given at the dinner table by Uncle Asif. I was quite pleased with it when I first picked it up: Basically, refuse to share his opinion and all you’re getting is an attitude. Jan 07, Beth rated it really liked it Shelves: The only explanation from Raheen’s father for this swap is that “the music changed.


Review: Kartography by Kamila Shamsie | Books | The Guardian

Dec 22, Mairi rated kartoyraphy it was amazing Shelves: The premise is touted as a love story between “soul-mates” Raheen and Karim, set amidst ethnic and political factions in Karachi. Aug 10, Myra rated it it was amazing Shelves: Perhaps this is because I am from a city but 2 hours away by air, a bitterly estranged sibling, but one that shares Karachi’s turbulent history, frustrating filth, maddening chaos but most of all its inexplicable, heart-wrenching magnetism.

It is also a nice reminder that even kamilla this is a book about betrayal, sacrifice, despair and God knows what else, it is also very far from being humourless.

The two friends and their families are members of the city’s wealthy elite, personified in its shallowness by family members like Raheen’s supercilious Aunt Runty and in guilty social conscience by Karim himself. John Bird et al. Kartography is a novel about membership, about who belongs where and with whom, about loyalties, about relational cause and effect see Catherine Belsey xiiincluding samsie ongoing, intergenerational consequences of Partition and the war, all within a period wherein firsthand accounts are still easily available: I remembered loving the book when I read it a few years ago.

Love, betrayal, sacrifice… and humour

I could not’ve read this in a single sitti Ever eat something that was so good, you had to take breaks, slow down, remember to stop to breathe because it was just so rich or delicious that you just couldn’t take it too quickly?

Demanding this, demanding that. Literary Visions of Political Origins. Maheen had already forgiven Zafar years ago and his mistakes weren’t the only obstacle in Raheen and Karim’s lovestory her own actions were also responsible for staining their relationship.

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