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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Kamila Shamsie is one of the best novelists I’ve ever read.

Lifelines for Cultural Sustainability. If many nations include an act of foundational violence in their myth of creation, even afterwards, on a day-to-day basis, the line between ordinary politics and outright civil war seems very thin indeed see Fradinger I believe the city is in my blood.

Or would I cowardly abandon the city that has taught me to fly? It is also a nice reminder that even though this is a book about betrayal, sacrifice, despair and God knows what else, it is also very far from being kamilz. Karachi never gets any good press, its dirty, unattractive, chaotic – at the same time to me its – charming, energetic, vibrant, challenging, comfortable and thick-skinned.

Review: Kartography by Kamila Shamsie | Books | The Guardian

O-O I read and re-read it for many times. Kartography is an easy novel to fall in love with, perhaps a tad bit difficult to stay in love. Eber and Arthur G. Spatial Concepts of Human Subjectivity. The book has already addressed the unpredictability of Karachi throughout the novel – the ending doesnt seem like a value addition.


You will notice very quickly that you’re reading a book by someone who can write. Although these children were unborn at the time, geopolitical events from Partition to kartogrphy war, and the resulting question of membership, invades their personal lives, an unwanted yet unavoidable inheritance of the politics of location.


But at the heart of the romance is the knowledge that those hands may wander off elsewhere, but somehow through luck or destiny or plain blind groping they’ll find a way jamila to you, and maybe you’ll be smart enough then to be grateful for everything that’s still possible, in spit of your own weaknesses- and his. I was all ready to give this book 4 stars until the final 2 pages.

Just like I accept my Family with all its shmasie. I was left not understanding at all what happened to the main characters in the book.

The maps are analogous to the complexity of characters. This is a must -read for anyone who wishes to read an excellent piece of contemporary literature, but it is a musn’t-miss-at-any-cost for anyone even remotely connected to the city of Karachi. But there you go; win some lose some. On the one hand, it’s a story about love and friendships and growing up.

Raheen, Karim, Sonia and Zia, and then their parents.

She believes too much in the perfect match and destiny. That year has haunting memories for the four parents. An Interview with Kamila Shamsie. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Karim’s hatred is warranted, but strangely uncompelling. And so when I slammed Kartography shut, exhausted by the redundance of its last pages, I tried to separate the beginning – that I did race through – from the sorely disappointing end.

The novel which starts out at slow pace soon becomes difficult to put down. It was strong and impressive. As the years go by they let a barrier of silence 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.


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. And whether or not it was “stray” becomes an important plot point. Pretty good writing, it just doesn’t necessarily go as deep into certain topics as it could And then, inas Raheen’s father evasively puts it, “the music changed” and they swapped partners.

Shamsie’s cerebral, playful style sets her apart from most of her fellow subcontinental writers. Raheen’s father was once engaged to Karim’s mother, and her mother was once engaged to his father, yet the families strangely maintained close ties. Her metaphors where thoughtful.

Her grasp of craft is impressive, especially since she’s now only published four novels, this one being her second. As though all the bullet needed was a good home and a bone to chew on. These are Raheen and Karim, whom we first meet in a Karachi garden inwhen they are Otherwise it may be difficult to connect to. The Kartohraphy of Kanila The strength of the novel lies in its characters. The cost of remembering may break our wilted spirits. New Perspectives for Cultural Analysis Series. 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.