In her critically acclaimed second novel, Salt and Saffron (), Kamila Shamsie followed an idealistic young Pakistani woman as she discovered that class. 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. Impassioned and touching, KARTOGRAPHY is a love song to Karachi. In her extraordinary new novel, Kamila Shamsie shows us that whatever happens in the .

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Her grasp of craft is impressive, especially since she’s now only published four novels, this one being her second. You will notice very quickly that you’re reading a book by someone who can write. Kartogarphy children, Raheen and Karim could read each other’s thoughts and complete each other’s sentences. Return to Book Page.

Kamila Shamsie’ Kartography is an exciting novel, especially for those who have lived in Karachi. New Reflections on the Revolutions of our Time. Here words are used as vehicles conveying both emotions and intelligence, while at the same time – because the whole novel hinges on a secret that is hidden from the narrator – Shamsie knows that words aren’t ahamsie everything, either.

Who can blame us? She writes, “It hits you in unexpected moments, this city’s romance ; everywhere, air pockets of loveliness just when your lungs can’t take anymore congestion or pollution or stifling newspaper headlines. Try hard not to hit him and end up hitting him. Shamsie clearly has a lot of talent.

Kartography by Kamila Shamsie

A very quick read. Though mainly a story about Raheen shamsei Karim, Zia and Sonia are every bit as intriguing. The strong bond of friendship between these two groups of friends and a huge transformation due to changing circumstances, both in the past and present, the nature and intensity of their love, their changing nature and personalities, all with such precision just melts into a complete beauty. The civil war, whose basis was geography and ethnicity, was shamsiie all accounts a horrible, murderous time, as such times tend to be; but for Karim, whose mother is Bengali, it is charged with a particularly personal significance.


More By and About This Author.

Love, betrayal, sacrifice… and humour

London and New York: But their connectedness reaches back before birth: That’s what Kartography was for me. Will the parents live up to the expectations of their children? He is currently working on Pakistani literature and history, and has served as an Associate Editor for the online journal Pakistaniaat. It is also the year in which the parents swapped partners yet managed to keep their friendship alive.

Most importantly, it so vividly describes why Karachi is such a complicated place. Shamsie has such a way with words. There is so much tragedy all around that people from all classes and ranks of life have their own sanctuaries to seek refuge from all this madness.

Pakistancivil wartraumatic experiencebinding violencemappingitinerarycultural identity.

As the years go by they let a barrier of ka,ila build between them until, finally, they are brought together during a dry summer of strikes and ethnic violence and their relationship is poised between strained friendship and fated love. Shamsie is the daughter of literary critic and writer Muneeza Shamsiethe niece of celebrated Indian novelist Attia Hosainand the granddaughter of the memoirist Begum Jahanara Habibullah.

Bg are a bunch of very resilient people.

Books by Kamila Shamsie. Against this suspenseful backdrop, Kartography is ostensibly a tale of children growing up in s Karachi, a period when the city was once again beset by ethnic strife. Sillages critiques En bref: Lists with This Book.


You can almost laugh at this humor of the elites, their typically unaffected life, and these games of making it to the lists of parties and knowing who is who and what is what. Tragedy strikes, we cry, we scream, we mourn, and then we just get on with our lives. While Reminiscing My childhood days spent with my cousins at my grandparents home, It dawns upon me that how innocent we were to never understand the family politics and how our minds were too preoccupied with broken knees and teasing each other that we never thought that we all will one day drift apart.


Culture and the Real. Why would an author do this, completely change her writing style for the last 2 pages? Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Their close friends Zia and Sonia play major roles in the story, as do all sets of parents. To ask other readers questions about Kartographyplease sign up. There isn’t much of a story and what there is,could have been told in far fewer words.

Please go out and fall in love with Kartography The book has already addressed the unpredictability of Karachi throughout the novel – the ending doesnt seem like a value addition. They have been inseparable friends since earliest infancy; they finish each other’s sentences and share a talent for anagrams.

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. Pretty good writing, it just doesn’t necessarily go as deep into certain topics as it could Paperbackpages.

Review: Kartography by Kamila Shamsie | Books | The Guardian

Shamsie’s cerebral, playful style sets her apart from most of her fellow subcontinental writers. I was drawn to this book by its title which finds an explanation in the book in a nice way and the Goodreads’ blurb.

Sonia is in fact a bit dim, but Zia, who is painted as something of a Woosterish drone, is smart enough to say, at 13, that the point of smoking is to draw attention to the lips, which is exactly right.

Something of a cross between Arundhati Roy and Salman Rushdie, she deserves a larger readership in the U. The novel which starts out at slow pace soon becomes difficult to put down. The pain of leaving one’s home is described as “This must be what dying feels like. Kartography is an easy novel to fall in love with, perhaps a tad bit difficult to stay in love.