Non Review Rant
Nostalgia, that’s how I remember this novel.
The year was 2003 and I was still a student. This was published in Pakeeza Aanchal, June 2003 edition. Until then, I had not learned the names of many women writers, nor did I notice any patterns in their stories.
I did that, and in this post you can read about my views on Aliya Bukhari’s writing style.
With that background, let’s get started.
I like this book, even though one of the characters, Masooma is shown to be the ultimate evil and selfish woman. She’s the kind who’s never happy. I am kinda her in that regard. But then I let others live their merry life. Masooma doesn’t.
Masooma (weds cousin Haroon), Raza (weds Seema), Saif (likes cousin Naveen) and Zoofi are siblings. Their mother gives too much importance to Masooma, indirectly giving her a power to dictate their lives. Circumstances force Haroon to marry Habeeba, a yateem-yaseer girl whose aunt is also evil.
Masooma doesn’t tolerate this and refuses to go back to Haroon’s house. It also means that now Saif cannot marry Nageen. So, he moves to Canada. Cut to three and a half years later, he returns home. Habeeba learns about Saif and Nageen’s untold love story and decides to sacrifice her own married life.
I read this paragraph and realise one thing: it sounds plain and simple and the magic of this story is missing.
The magic comes with Aliya’s skillful narration and strong characters. I say this often for Farhat Ishtiaq’s heroes that you want to see them in real life. Haroon was that character who triggered that thought in my head when I was young. He was such a nice human being that I felt, borrowing my two-year-old niece’s words: hona (I want).
My elder sister and I loved, LOVED this novel.
Saying a word more will ruin this novel for you. Please, I insist, read it. While you’re at it, check out a few of my musings as well.
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