ATP Reads: Your Favorite Books on Pakistan

Posted on January 26, 2010
Filed Under >Adil Najam, Books
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Adil Najam

We at ATP like books. Over the last many months we have featured and discussed a number of books that relate to Pakistan in various ways.

In the Name of HonorIn the Line of FireA Mighty HeartCharlie Wilson's WarShameful FlightFriends not MastersThe Sole SpokesmanPakistans DriftJinnah by WolpertGrieving ShiasJehlum: City of VitastaEdhiPortrait of a Giving CommunityBetween Mosque and MilitaryEqbal AhmedThree Cups of Tea

I must confess that I had always hoped that we would talk more about books than we have. I hope we will be able to do so in the future. As a step towards that goal, we would like to invite our readers to share with us your suggestions of books on Pakistan that are worth reading.

This is not a popularity contest. We have no awards to give. We merely want to collate a list of books on Pakistan that people consider to be interesting reads. Specially those that you would consider recommending to others for whatever reason.

We have only two criteria:

  • First, that the books you suggest must be about Pakistan, and significantly so. We, of course, realize that many Pakistanis read many books that are not about Pakistan, but the focus of this blog is not only on ‘All’ Things Pakistan, but also ‘Only’ things about Pakistan.
  • Second, for the purpose of this first exercise please restrict your suggestions to books in the English language. This is a pragmatic, and not an ideological, criteria. The universe of books in Urdu is much larger – especially when one includes works of fiction and poetry – and hopefully we will have a separate exercise on those. For now, we wish to start small by focusing only on English language books.

The plan right now is to make this post and list a standing feature and to keep adding to it as readers share their suggestions and ideas. Hopefully this will be a useful service to those interested in Pakistan and Pakistaniat.

138 responses to “ATP Reads: Your Favorite Books on Pakistan”

  1. Adam Pal says:

    The Best book on pakistan is recently published “Pakistan’s Other Story – The 1968-69 Revolution” by Lal Khan. Also an introduction by Alan Woods.
    5 editions of this book have been published. 2 in urdu, 1 in english in pakistan, 1 from sweeden and 1 in India by Akaar books. Inauguration ceremonies of this book have taken place in Islamabad, Karachi, Hyderabad, Quetta, Rahim Yar Khan, Multan, Lahore, Gujranwala, Rawlakot, Peshawar, London and New Delhi.

    All leading urdu and english papers have published reviews on it including Dawn r-story.htm 3-2009/lit.htm#2

  2. Jamshed says:

    Dawn’s Sunday supplement,”Books and Authors” regularly features reviews of new books along with excerpts.Some of the books featured in recent months :
    “Rock n Roll Jihad” by Junoon musician,Salman Ahmed.
    “Partition and the Making of the Mohajir Mindset” by A.R.Siddiqui.
    “Alive and Well in Pakistan” by Ethan Casey.

  3. Jamshed says:

    Bapsi Sidhwa is often credited with being the first major Pakistani English novelist.It is somewhat ironical then,to read her book “Ice Candy Man” (also publised as “Cracking India”) and to find that she was less than thrilled with the idea of the creation of Pakistan.Partition riots also find a place in another of her books “The Bride”.
    Bapsi is a fine writer,nevertheless.The city of Lahore is one of her favourite subjects,finding a place in several of her novels.She has also written a separate book on Lahore.

  4. Jamshed says:

    Long before he became a politician,Imran Khan wrote an autobiography,”Imran”. It is the straightforward story of his remarkable career.Among the better books on Pakistani cricket.

  5. Jamshed says:

    Pakistan,seen through the eyes of a young Indian.Rahul Bhattacharya’s “Pundits from Pakistan.” It is a book about cricket (India’s tour to Pakistan in 2004) but it is also a book about Pakistan and its cities.Remarkably good.

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