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The Nine Lives of Pakistan: Dispatches from a Precarious State Kindle Edition
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― Amna Nawaz, New York Times Book Review
"Walsh is an engaging guide....Nine Lives of Pakistan is an unquestionably illuminating and engaging book…an elegantly crafted memoir of a gifted journalist."
― Bilal Qureshi, Washington Post
"An irresistible combination of storytelling panache and in-depth knowledge; Declan Walsh brings vividly to life characters and situations that illuminate some of the most significant phases of Pakistan’s history."
― Kamila Shamsie, author of Home Fire
"A wonderful book which sets a new benchmark for non-fiction about the complex palace of mirrors that is Pakistan. Star New York Times foreign correspondent Declan Walsh has a rapier wit, a talent for skillfully sketched pen portraits and a sharp eye for tragedy, paradox and absurdity. With The Nine Lives of Pakistan he has produced a beautifully, lightly, fluently written book that is as profoundly nuanced as it is sharply perceptive."
― William Dalrymple, author of The Anarchy: The East India Company, Corporate Violence, and the Pillage of an Empire
"In The Nine Lives of Pakistan, Declan Walsh describes, with intellectual power and cool elegance, a much-misunderstood country. All those interested in South Asia and its complex politics and culture should read [this book]."
― Pankaj Mishra, author of The Age of Anger
"Captivating.... Walsh is a wonderful writer, with a gift for sketching an impression of a place, time and ambience with a few brief lines. He knows how to interweave travelogue with an account of the relentless tensions that always threaten to burst through each vignette in the book. What also shines through is the relish with which Walsh throws himself into the far corners of Pakistan, into crowds, celebrations and rites, with a drive born of fascination with the land and its people."
― Julian Borger, Guardian
"If you want to read one book about contemporary Pakistan, it has to be The Nine Lives of Pakistan, an intimate yet sweeping account of Pakistan’s contemporary history. Walsh is a rare foreign correspondent who doesn’t condescend, a storyteller who lets his characters speak. Although I am familiar with most of the events and characters Walsh writes about, his retelling left me breathless."
― Mohammed Hanif, author of A Case of Exploding Mangoes
"An enthralling account of Mr. Walsh’s near-decade as a correspondent."
― Tunku Varadarajan, Wall Street Journal
"[A] thrilling, big-hearted book....If Walsh’s guts take him places others have not reached, his prose – vigorous, cockeyed and clear – brings it home to the reader....This is not just a book for someone wanting to find out about Pakistan, although it performs that job admirably. It is also a richly observed study of how humans respond to the extraordinary pressures of a sometimes-choking society; empathetic, but hard-nosed and never veering into hagiography."
― Memphis Barker, Telegraph
"An immersive and splendidly written portrait of Pakistan….Rich with incisive historical context, astute cultural analysis, and evocative language, Walsh’s account brings Pakistan’s contradictions to fascinating life. This masterfully reported account deserves a wide readership."
― Publishers Weekly, starred review --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.
About the Author
- ASIN : B07ZTS1D97
- Publisher : W. W. Norton & Company (November 17, 2020)
- Publication date : November 17, 2020
- Language : English
- File size : 7037 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 357 pages
- Lending : Not Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #345,335 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Top reviews from the United States
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Having lived in Islamabad I thought I’d know a lot of what would be covered in these pages but there’s so much I had no idea about.
SO well written too, never got boring or a slog, in fact the pace is brilliant
Top reviews from other countries
Generally it was an interesting read with some well drawn out vignettes of some well and some lesser well-known figures through Pakistan’s history. Walsh is an engaging writer who can hold the readers attentions.
Which is all the more disappointing as his book lacks depths and often reverts to well trodden western tropes of Pakistan. He is at pains to point out that many of the protagonists drink (shock horror Muslims drink) and the usual 'western liberalism' versus reactionary mullah debate.
He makes some very basic factual errors (Jinnah was born a Shia [he was born Ismail’i] the religious establishment didn’t want an independent Muslim state but a pan national caliphate [the deobandis where opposed to the creation Pakistan and there were no calls for worldwide caliphate amongst the Indian ulema], and his comments on Sufism are orientalist ['mystics', mystical, liberal and so on ]).
Furthermore this book feels out of date, and the author should have drawn out his narrative more fully to 2020. Finally, there was a definite feeling of hopelessness with some of the vignettes. Why not distill Pakistan through the persona of Edhi? Or what about some of the more interesting and neglected early pioneers of Pakistan (Mohammad Ali Bogra or Suhawardy?)
An interesting but flawed book, which feels sensationalist and lacking in depth. Suzy Hanson’s “Notes on a Foreign Land” is a far better example of a journo trying to unlock and understand a complex nation.
Asma jahangir...played into the hands of Indians as we see in the latest EU Disinfolab report... Col Imam was not brigadier but a Col.
The book is more of a ready mix formula of presenting the pakistani society where people are fighting for freedom of expression, IsI being the bad guys.