Last week our Urdu Book Club discussed Imrana Maqsood’s book that she wrote about her husband Anwar Maqsood, the well-known Urdu writer and artist. This book is a lovely addition into modern Urdu literature and provides us insight not just into the house of Anwar Maqsood but also in the relationship of a husband and wife. Here’s my detailed Uljhay Suljhay Anwar review for you!
Anwar Maqsood’s family is well-known for their association to arts, culture and media in Pakistan. His sisters are household names in Pakistan and his son Bilal Maqsood is the heart throb of millions due to his pop star status. Anwar Maqsood is a living legend in Pakistan due to his contributions towards Urdu literature.
In this book Imrana Maqsood shares her journey of moving from India to Pakistan with her family many years after the partition of 1947. Her family was closely related and associated to Anwar Maqsood’s. She always found herself in the shadow of her two accomplished older sisters and was greatly surprised when she realized that Anwar Maqsood was interested in her since she considered herself dark and unattractive. She brings up a great point here about how in South Asian households there is hardly any work done to build up the self-esteem of a girl.
While we have seen Anwar Maqsood raise many issues for women through his work, as a husband he was quite emotionally distant and Imrana shares many incidents from her life where we realize how impractical and even cold Anwar Maqsood’s approach was to the day-to-day issues of life.
Many will pick this book because they are fans of Anwar Maqsood, however they will see another side of him in this book that only a wife can describe. The style of writing is conversational and even Imrana admits quite haphazard since she goes back and forth in timelines. I enjoyed some earlier chapters more when I reread them after finishing the book, since I understood the background.
Some might complain that her tone is bitter. However, this is her voice and her story and she has done a lovely job of writing as she is speaking to us. The first 145 pages are Imrana’s writing and then some of Anwar Maqsood’s newspaper columns and a drama have been added to make the book a little more than 300 pages. I felt this was done to beef up the book.
I would highly recommend this book since it is the story of a woman finding her voice and sharing her journey. Hope you enjoyed this Uljhay Suljhay Anwar review. Have you read the book? What did you think?
Here’s a video Uljhay Suljhay Anwar review also: