15 July 2017
The story is about a Pakistani girl who goes to The United States to pursue her career in medical profession, and how she ends up in the midst of culture, family and honour crisis. You need to read the book to know if she is successful in becoming a doctor which she dreamt about.
The story is 388 pages long but each page is a thrill to read. Lucy has divided the story in 32 chapters, so if you are like me, you would finish the book in a month’s time. I read one chapter every day and couldn’t wait to read the next one.
Though the story is a fiction, Lucy has researched her subject very well and brings reality to her words. It’s a showcase of Pakistan’s Pashtuni culture to the world. Each character has been thought about in detail and when one reads each page, one can visualise each character as to how each one looks. Afia, the main lead, is beautiful to look at, so is Gus, the love of her life. Shahid, her real brother is physically fit and has broad shoulders, perfect for a squash player. Khalid, her step brother is intense and rough, and fits in the villainous role to the core.
Even the supporting characters, Farishta, Afia’s mom, while one reads, one can visualise her plight when she sees her daughter in the face of death, then Coach Hayes, one can understand her feelings for Shahid and Afia and how she is stuck emotionally between these two and her husband Ethan. Ethan’s character is of a cool and understanding husband, one can imagine his expressions, his fear, his care towards her wife and daughter.
The story is fast paced, thriller to the core, it has romance, it has action, it has suspense, it has the occasional twist in tale, there are quite a number of characters in the story, but none of them seem to be added just for the sake of it, each one has a specific role to play, each one more important than the other.
It is a beautiful, thought provoking book, which will make you feel scared at times when you imagine if all this could be real, it is a book which will make you want to change things in the world, it is a book which will make you want Afia and her love to be together, it is a book which will want you to make the villain Khalid understand a few things in life, it is a story which you will feel, the world still needs to change a lot more, for the better!
I would recommend the book to anyone and everyone, Lucy has used a plain simple language to pen her words, and the story moves in a smooth and discreet manner.
Lucy has even added a few pages towards the end for discussion, that is very clever of her since this is one book which might be open to debate and controversy. She clarifies in these pages some of the questions which might arise in the mind of the reader.