Archive | May, 2016

Snapshots: Book review by Dianne – 5 out of 5

24 May

Simply breathtaking. Author Mehreen Ahmed takes us on an incredible journey to many of the world’s cities, rivers and untamed lands, filled with rich history, unique cuisines, ancient customs and c…

Source: Snapshots: Book review by Dianne – 5 out of 5

David Tanager reviews The Blotted Line

2 May

David Tanager Reviews the Blotted Line: 5/5
As an avid reader of short stories, and having previously read two of Mehreen Ahmed’s novels, I was very excited to read ‘The Blotted Line’ short story collection.
The collection itself is diverse, not only in the locales, but also in the characters and their motivations and obsessions. While each seems to possess a sense of loss or that of a missed opportunity, Mehreen Ahmed skillfully develops each character into a unique entity with layers that are so diverse that each short story could easily be carried into an individual novel driven solely on their depth.
I feel that this collection has something for everyone in it, due to these characters and the intriguing plots. We can all relate to at least one of these characters, if not all of them for they are truly human in their desires, wants, and fears. The author, having been well traveled, has surely been in the various locations described in the book that span the globe. You can get a real sense that she has become part of the culture and local niche when she describes minute details that would pass by any casual observer. I recognized this instantly in the first short, when Ahmed describes the gate within a gate, reminding me of my travels and noticing the same thing in my sub-conscious but not having it registered until her character refreshed my memory.
Initially the short ‘Charade’ was going to get my vote as my favorite in this collection, as it caught me off guard with its witty humor and also subtle commentary on society and human nature. ‘The Black Coat’, ultimately took my number one spot, but it was after I finished reading it. The obsession of the main character in this short was so well written, it began to work on me after I thought about it, and I returned to reread this short and discovered more layers than I had before when I first read it.
I would highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys short stories that have a literary value, present new and unique locations (as well as Paris) and give you something after to think about, specifically as I mentioned before, about the human condition, and what it means to truly live.