A woman and the afternoon sun
This is a collection of short stories, which sets out to explore complex emotions, challenge patriarchal mores and social platitudes, and assumptions where small daily events or incidents can assume a metaphorical significance. The treatment of East and West Pakistan is very well done, particularly the subtle use suggestion and innuendo to convey happy memories as well as those of sorrow, loss and ‘difference’. Such a portrayal of Pakistan and its two wings, East and West, is very rare in Pakistani English literature.
This is the first collection of short fiction by a gifted woman writer and introduces a new voice. It brings forth a new talent who uses her individual experience and voice to cover new ground. The stories are well written and free of hackneyed situations or experiences. There is freshness in her work. Given the great interest in Pakistani writing in English, this book is likely to attract readers at home and in the international market.
Her fictions are brief; her voice is quiet, though often deceptively so. Her settings are frequently local and domestic, but her deftly painted backdrops announce the bigger stories of her region and her time. Within the span of a few pages, she can shift perspectives between past and present, or move from the familiar landscapes of Karachi or Lahore to Istanbul, Frankfurt or Bengal.