Monday, 29 August 2011
Review: Tender Hooks by Moni Mohsin
Two years back, I got hooked onto books about the Middle East. Most books I read such as Khaled Hosseini's, Mohsin Hameed's and Daniyal Mueenuddin's dealt with intense issues. Soon I began to wonder if heavy and depressing stories were all that the South Asian Writers had to offer. That perception changed when I read a review of Moni Mohsin's much talked about book, Tender hooks.
Clutching a copy of the book when I walked out of the book store, I knew I was in for something funny, bone-tickling and most importantly, lighthearted. After classic reads such as The Beautiful and the Damned and The picture of Dorian Gray, I was in need of some major comic relief. And that I got!
The story has been set in present day Lahore, with the ever-increasing problems of the country mentioned in random headline on top of each chapter. The narrator, a social butterfly from a 'khata peeta bagground' not a 'bhooka nanga' one with a rich husband who is more like a 'zinda lash' and a fifteen year old son Kulchoo, comes across as a shallow woman, obsessed with her status. Her group of affluent friends, 'kittys', GTs (Get togethers), dinners and parties are all a staple feature of her lifestyle.
The language of the book is very different as it doesn't conform to traditional English which is justified as it is better able to portray the life of an elitist society. The book is a hilarious take on the rich and the famous of Pakistan who live in their own bubble, very much aware of their surrounding but unfazed nevertheless.
It was sheer joy to read the book, made me laugh out loud a couple of times and satisfied me with a happy ending.