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outspoken but without limitation
The book is written in very interesting, very bold manner that provides uncountable spots for laugh & smile...it is a beautiful mixture of fact (a little )& fiction ( in a large number ). It reveals the conspiracies of all over the not only of Pakistan but it seems that some time writer cross very limitation of decency or morality in order to avenge from Zia-ul-Haq or army.
Timely Political Satire
I really enjoyed this book. The dark humor is laugh-out-loud funny at times even though the story is about a political assination in Pakistan.
Worked great as a sleeping aid....
The book is a brilliant satire filled with irony.
With the world currently focused on Afghanistan and Pakistan and the political drama playing out in that area of the world, this presents a comic picture of how things might be accomplished in an authoritarian dictatorship.
Interestingly, the most sympathetic character in the book is the assassinated dictator who is at the center of several assassination plots that come together in the final act.
This is an interesting read that will appeal to anyone interested in both political topics and literary satire.
I just could not get into this book. Every time I picked it up to read I found myself asleep after 5 or so pages. I found it confusing in some parts and dry in others. I'm sure some will like it, but it is obviously not my type of book.
Highly recommended creative historical fiction
I think this novel is a brilliant addition to the era following Suleri's "Meatless Days," and Rushdie's novels.
While Hanif writes about loyalty to family, country, and friendship, he also writes about military life in post-colonial Pakistan, decades-long conspiracies, and the politics of Third World and First World interactions.
This is historical fiction, with both comedic (stereotypes, dark humor) and serious (nations and outlaws with weapons) events. It's a reminder of how the past speaks to the present, including both the familiar and the frightening characters from international history.
Mysterious, horrifying, and even funny at times. Describes the revenge plot of a young man for his father's death. Interesting depictions of life in the Middle East. The arbitrary and inhumane punishments and unstable government make me glad to live in America. Recommend for anyone interested in other cultures.
Might as well laugh . . .
The worse the world news becomes, the more I seem to be drawn to paying attention - like driving by a wreck on the freeway. As an antidote to that helpless feeling, I've also always been drawn to the fictional therapy of books such as Catch 22 and anything by Vonnegut. Here's another one. A Case of Exploding Mangoes takes the reader to that part of the world we just can't keep from watching with shivers of dread and fascination, and allows humor to provide the glimmer of a hope that maybe its all just an absurd joke.
Funny but long
Here's a treat for fans of political satire, and for once the subject is not the United States government. Hanif has a great time with the political, cultural, and religious underpinnings of Pakistan. For the first half of the book I was entranced. But after a while it's like a joke that's maybe gone on a bit long. Still recommended for the right reader, however.
Too many mangoes, not enough jam
I had a hard time getting into this book. I'm not sure exactly why, I can't criticize the writing, but I felt like I was always trying to catch up with the author. There were so many characters and plots, I had a hard time keeping everyone straight. I felt like things were happening that had hidden meanings that should be obvious to me, but weren't really. I think someone with a military background and more familiarity with Pakistani culture and history may get more out of it. It wasn't a bad read after I got past the first 100 pages and started getting a feel for the "voice" of the author, but I wouldn't put it on my "must read" list for anyone.