- Paperback: 272 pages
- Publisher: Random House India; 1st edition edition (27 February 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 8184004605
- ISBN-13: 978-8184004601
- Product Dimensions: 18.8 x 1.7 x 13.3 cm
- Average Customer Review: 13 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #13,610 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Karachi, You're Killing Me! Paperback – 27 Feb 2014
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Saba Imtiaz has taken good care in keeping the narrative true to life in Karachi. The subtleties of her interactions with policemen, rickshaw drivers, guards etc leave a refreshing impression about a city where life moves at a very fast pace. Readers would find this book interesting in 50 years time as well, when it will have a historic element to life in karachi. --By usman zia on April 10, 2014
It is not ground breaking, or earth shattering novel. A regular novel, by all means. What i loved about it was the details on Karachi and other parts of Pakistan. Being an Indian, all of it sounded strangely familiar and was easily related to. --By Ashutosh Dhar on June 14, 2014
For a long time, those interested in Pakistan (or South Asia in general) have had to be content with a series of fairly overwritten/overwrought novels. Not many voice this frustration in public, but I doubt I am the only one to feel it. Our wait is over. 'Karachi, You're Killing Me' is a tour-de-force rampage of a novel that tears through the realities of living in a metropolis-mega-city like Karachi as a twenty-something female journalist. From tracking down disappeared political prisoners to the travails of covering fashion week, Saba Imtiaz brings the city to life in a way that no book (with the possible exception of Mohammad Hanif's Our Lady of Alice Bhatti) has so far. --By Alex Strick van Linschoten on March 2, 2014
About the Author
Saba Imtiaz is a journalist based in Karachi. Her work has appeared in the Guardian and the Christian Science Monitor. This is her first novel.
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Chicklit at heart, Karachi, You’re Killing Me is Saba Imtiaz’s love letter to the city. It’s very evident from the start that while Ayesha might be the protagonist, it is the city Karachi that is the central character of the book. From frequent bombings to the intellectual lit fest, from political rallies to religious flavoured fashion shows, there is a little bit of everything in the plot.
Saba Imtiaz’s characters sound a lot like Jane Austen’s characters let loose in a developing country with access to booze and Whatsapp. A story that is empowering and non preachy in quality, it’s also likeable and very relate-able. It’s true that we all make wrong choices, continue at jobs with ungrateful bosses and fight with friends over trivial issues. These when turned into subject for a book, can only make for a very interesting reading.
Laugh riot that deserves to be read!
Saba Imtiaz’s debut is classic chick-lit – and I do not mean that as a compliment. Complete with a chronically single woman who drinks too much and has a career that refuses to take off, a gorgeous-but-platonic best friend AND a cat, this book should be titled If Bridget Jones Had Been Written in Pakistan.
Ayesha is a journalist working her ass off among slimy, smarmy masochists in Karachi, and has been waiting for her big break for quite a while now. Her love life is in the bin, and at 28, her colleagues and friends are rising and shining in their respective careers, while the only relationship she has is with her bootlegger. Things start looking up when she bumps into the gorgeous gora and CNN reporter Jamie. His interest in her causes much anxiety and butterflies (it’s been two hours! Why hasn’t he called yet? Is he not as into me as I’d thought? But he said he was. Should I call him? But I don’t want to appear too clingy. WHY HASN’T HE CALLED YET? *Checks phone some more, stalks him on social media, thinks of dropping by his hotel room on some pretext*)
Difficult to imagine a ‘successful, smart and independent’ twenty eight year old woman – or even anyone out of their teenage – being this tied up over a gorgeous face she has met once. The protagonist more than once came across as a self-obsessed whiny sixteen year old playing grown up. The first half is filled with cribbing about everything – Karachi, the lack of sex, the poor liquor, her job, her cat, even detailed comments about the sucky weather. When it finally looks like she is about to get her big break and is trailing a story, she can’t resist bragging and talks about it with fellow journalist Jamie, who later steals it and is showered with limelight. Thus, another cliche is added to the mix. The female chasing after the gorgeous-but-evil man while the right one has been there in front of her all along. Of course, everything neatly ties up in the last couple of pages and the book closes with Ayesha having found the love of her life and a great career.
Yawn. The writing style is what kept me turning the pages. Acerbic, sharp and witty, even if it came across as trying-too-hard in some places. A little originality would have done wonders, and here’s hoping Imtiaz strikes gold the next time.
Final verdict: good for a couple of laughs but that’s all.
Originally reviewed at Vaultofbooks.com, a close-knit community of fanatical readers. We are looking for perceptive readers who can write well, and we are eager to provide lots of free books in exchange for reviews. Shoot us a mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
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