Bapsi Sidhwa,Fatima Bhutto

The Crow Eaters

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Seeking capitalist ventures and fortune, Faredoon ‘Freddy’ Junglewalla moves his family – his pregnant wife, children and belligerent mother-in-law – from their ancestral village in rural India to the bustling metropolis of Lahore. Welcomed by the small but tight-knit Parsi community, Freddy establishes a booming business and his family soon become one of the most respected in Lahore. It seems that the only thing holding Freddy back is his sizeable and burdensome mother-in-law. As his family grows, and events – funny, tragic and life-changing – occur, Freddy’s reach permeates the wider country and an intricate portrait of colonial India is revealed. But when tragedy forces Freddy to rethink his legacy, intimations of historic change loom on the country’s horizon. Wickedly funny and searingly honest, The Crow Eaters is a vibrant portrait of a Parsi family taking its place in colonial India on the brink of the 20th Century, from one of Pakistan’s best-loved and finest novelists. ‘One of the great comic novels of the 20th Century.’ – Hanif Kureishi ‘A novel of immense charm and exuberance . .. Sidhwa consistently imparts the magic and colour of India even in its most down-to-earth aspects.’ – The Times ‘Bapsi Sidhwa’s voice – comic, serious, subtle, always sprightly – is an important one to hear. I’m delighted to see her terrific novels back in print.’ – Salman Rushide ‘The Crow Eaters is an excellent novel . .. The author is a born storyteller.’ – New Statesman ‘Sidhwa writes with an exuberance and geniality which make The Crow Eaters illuminating and memorable.’ – Jim Crace
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300 printed pages
Original publication
Daunt Books



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    Syed Alirazahas quoted2 years ago
    – Freddy – Parsi, philanthropist, businessman, arsonist, pimp, scoundrel, hustler, mis-quoter of Nietzsche, overall fraud and poetry critic has moved his family (including his ‘happily unmodernised’ wife Putli and their children) to Lahore in order to make his fortune. The only real weight he carries is his ‘armoured tank’ of a mother-in-law, Jerbanoo – who alone, it seems, realises Freddy, ‘infernal toad’ that he is, is never up to any good.
    Abdul Rehmanhas quoted4 years ago
    ‘Ah, well, you look after your needs and God looks after you …’
    Abdul Rehmanhas quoted4 years ago
    ‘Need makes a flatterer of a bully and persuades a cruel man to kindness. Call it circumstances, call it self-interest, call it what you will, it still remains your need. All the good in this world comes from serving our own ends. What makes you tolerate someone you’d rather spit in the eye? What subdues that great big “I”, that monstrous ego in a person? Need, I tell you, will force you to love your enemy as a brother!’

On the bookshelves

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    The crow eaters
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