Bitter Fruit: The Very Best of Saadat Hasan Manto is a selection of some of the best and diverse works of the acclaimed Urdu writer. It is edited and translated by Khalid Hasan.
Summary of the Book
Widely renowned as the best short story writer in Urdu, Manto’s stories were mostly written against the milieu of the Partition. Bitter Fruit presents the best collection of Manto’s writings, from his short stories, plays and sketches, to portraits of cinema artists, a few pieces on himself, and his letters to Uncle Sam – which have references to communism, Russia, politics after the Partition and his own financial condition. The concluding section of the book has acknowledgements and reminiscences from Saadat’s friends and relatives. Bitter Fruit includes stories like A Wet Afternoon, The Return, A Believer’s Version, Toba Tek Singh, Colder Than Ice, The Assignment, Odour, By The Roadside, Bribing The Almighty, The Kingdom’s End, The Woman In The Red Raincoat, The Room With The Bright Light, The Great Divide, The Angel, Siraj, An Old Fashioned Man, The Price Of Freedom, It Happened In 1919, The Girl From Delhi, A Man Of God, Free For All, and A Tale Of 1947. There is a collection of sketches too. Manto used to write radio plays and this book has one of the dramas he penned, called In This Vortex. His short stories bring out the most delicate nuances of human nature.
About the Authors
Saadat Hasan Manto is widely known mostly for his short stories. He was born in Punjab’s Ludhiana district in the year 1912. He spent most of his childhood in Amritsar and finished his schooling there. Manto was always keenly interested in Western literature. He translated a few works of writers like Anton Chekhov, Victor Hugo, and Oscar Wilde into Urdu. While he was at the Aligarh Muslim University, doing his graduation, he joined the Indian Progressive Writers Association, which gave an encouragement to his passion of writing. Manto published his first collection of Urdu short stories in 1936. He then worked as an editor for a film magazine for a few years in Bombay, and got acquainted with many film personalities. Manto moved to Lahore after the Partition and eventually his career became hindered by financial woes. He took to consuming inexpensive alcohol, and passed away due to liver cirrhosis in the year 1955. Some of his most notable books are Naked Voices Stories & Sketches, Stars From Another Sky, Mottled Dawn, For Freedom's Sake: Selected Stories and Sketches, and Partition: Sketches and Stories.
Khalid Hasan was a famous Pakistani author, writer and journalist. He was born in 1935, in Srinagar, Kashmir. His writings were chiefly political and social. He was also a translator, who translated the most famous works of several Pakistani writers into English, particularly those of Saadat Hasan Manto. He started his career as a journalist with the Pakistan Times. Upon being beckoned by the former Pakistani President Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, Khalid joined him as his Press Secretary. He then worked as a freelance journalist and correspondent for several publications and news agencies across the world. He passed away in 2009 in Washington. Some of Khalid’s famous works include Private View, A Mug’s game, The Crocodiles are Here to Swim, Question Time, and The Umpire Strikes Back.
The book strikes a deep chord
23 Mar, 2012
5 Feb, 2013
22 Jul, 2017
12 Jun, 2017
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10 Mar, 2014
Exceptional and absorbing writing
16 Jan, 2014
THE best book I've ever read in my life...
3 Mar, 2013