Author: Tehmina Durrani
Rating: ⭐️⭐️, 2/5
Blasphemy.. the book is an extreme depiction of male tyranny & religious fundamentalism. When I borrowed it - I felt it would be either a feminist book or one about a tortured women in an islamist state. When I started reading it turned out be the latter for sure but the extreme of torture was uncomparable to anything I had read.. How can someone be tortured so much and still survive and end up with a happy ending.. its quiet impossible that one lives a life of a slave, being raped, beaten to death almost everyday & still survive to tell the story & say they 'Happily lived everafter'. or i wonder whether it was just a symbolic ending with happiness & heaven after death..
The book says it is based on a true story but it seemed so fictional so out of this world and so primitive. There is every form of possible torture a man can do on a woman.. his wife, mother, daughter, sister.. the protagonist 'Heer' suffered in every form and every man in her life was an extreme. The author portrayed that men & women are determined through their birth. Some were born with strong characters & some were born weak. They were different from each other and one could not survive the evil prevailing and falls prey.. the ones which survived turned evil.. so there is only one choice either you be evil or die a nameless death.
There was nothing conventional in the type of torture. Every evil was extreme - selling wife as a pimp, incest sleeeping with sister or daughters, paedophiles lurking on young girls as old as 9 or 10, making cheap blue movies of your wife & selling, killing your own son on stake of possesiveness & jealousy, raping a pregnant woman, the unsatiated sexual fantasies of a man let loose on every woman in his vicinity, the crimes are gross and limitless.. there is no guilt - its only survival instinct, to fight evil, you had to be more evil, so there was no limit to the devlish acts of the tormenter & the tormented.. they just saved each other by cutting the other. Also the kind of risks the women took while living in such a dangerous family or social structure.. it is quiet impossible that she was not stoned to death.
The protagonist herself creates a bait for her survival but that ends up as a noose for her. She manages to live through it all for 24 years and then when she is finally loosing everything, she is just set free like a miracle.. well in a book where such extreme tortuous acts happen the miracles are also quiet believable because possibly that is the only hope for survival of such worlds, such are the social patterns of our people.
Its not a great read. Read it to feel sad for such women or read to feel good and thankful for your own lives in an independent world where you can be what you are. Where men & women though not equals but stay parallel.. It is more important to be parallel & not cut each other than being an equal & keep cutting.. that maintains the equilibrium of this world...