'As compassionate as it is trenchant, this rare fiction is an illuminating guide through the great disorder of our times.' Pankaj Mishra, author of Age of Anger
How far would you run to escape your life?
Anita lives in Karachi's biggest slum. Her mother is a maalish wali, paid to massage the tired bones of rich women. But Anita's life will change forever when she meets her elderly neighbour, a man whose shelves of books promise an escape to a different world.
On the other side of Karachi lives Monty, whose father owns half the city and expects great things of him. But when a beautiful and rebellious girl joins his school, Monty will find his life going in a very different direction.
Sunny's father left India and went to England to give his son the opportunities he never had. Yet Sunny doesn't fit in anywhere. It's only when his charismatic cousin comes back into his life that he realises his life could hold more possibilities than he ever imagined.
These three lives will cross in the desert, a place where life and death walk hand in hand, and where their closely guarded secrets will force them to make a terrible choice.
'A powerful and moving book. It is a book that anyone rushing to condemn young people for being radicalised should read.' Anne Youngson, author of Meet Me at the Museum
'Dazzling . . . a novel that holds up to scrutiny a world of claustrophobic war zones, virulent social media and cities collapsing upon themselves, and then sets it down again, transformed by the grace of storytelling' Siddartha Deb, author of The Point of Return
PRAISE FOR FATIMA BHUTTO'S PREVIOUS WORK:
'It's clear that there is an ambitious literary mind at work...Bhutto's talent is evident, exciting' The New York Times Book Review
'Bhutto is a gifted and compelling writer, economically and poetically summoning up this beautiful mountainous backwater' Mail on Sunday
'Incredibly ambitious, extremely powerful and moving' BBC Radio 4