From the DSC award-winning author of Home Boy comes “noisy, rambunctious, hilarious novel” (John Freeman)—an exuberantly told, fresh tale of one gloriously unaccomplished man, his impending death, and the history and life of his bustling, shape-shifting city
Winner of the inaugural DSC Prize for South Asian Literature, H.M. Naqvi follows his critically-lauded debut Home Boy with The Selected Works of Abdullah the Cossack, an enthralling novel about one unforgettable and gloriously unaccomplished man, his impending death, and the history and life of his bustling, shape-shifting city.
A’bdUllah, bachelor and scion of a once prominent family, awakes on the morning of his seventieth birthday and considers launching himself over the balcony. Having spent years attempting to compile a “mythopoetic legacy” of his beloved Karachi, the cosmopolitan heart of Pakistan, Abdullah has lost his zeal. A surprise invitation for a night out from his old friend Felix Pinto snaps A’bdUllah out of his funk, and saddles him with a ward—Pinto’s adolescent grandson Bosco. As A’bdUllah plays mentor to Bosco, he also attracts the romantic attentions of Jugnu, an enigmatic siren with links to the mob. All the while A’bdUllah’s brothers’ plot to evict him from the family estate. Now he must to try to save his home—or face losing his last connection to his familial past. Anarchic, erudite, and rollicking, with a septuagenarian protagonist like no other, The Selected Works of A’bdUllah the Cossack is a joyride of a story set against a kaleidoscopic portrait of one of the world’s most vibrant cities.