A bomb explodes at a station in Karachi and events unfold. A poet harassed by people minutes before the blast. His son yearning for something he cannot have. There is loss, heartbreak and someone or the other, who wants something or the other. Bilals view of life is large and heartbreakingly real. Bilals words and plots are smooth sailing and sometimes leave the reader wanting more and yet do not give things closure. The reader has to think of it what could have happened and that is one of the best things a reader can ask for. A read not to be missed this year.
The Scatter Here is Too Great by Bilal Tanweer is a book which is made up of a bunch of stories which are all in some way or another connected to each other. The thing that they have in common is the bomb blast which took place is Karachi. Each story brings out a different emotion and how at the end of the day we're left to pick up the pieces.
In the beginning I found the book to be a little disorienting. This could be because I didn't properly see what the book was about. We never get a clear picture of the narrator of that particular story. But then I realized that the purpose is the events that occurred. The people who were affected were just a part of it.
We get several different views of several different people and what was going on with them during, before and after the bomb blast took place. The bomb blast has affected each and every single person in the city and in the end the people are left trying to come to terms with it. Everyone is searching for the beauty which was in the city of Karachi and their memories with it before things were ruined.
Bilal Tanweer is a really good writer. His writing style is slightly unusual and that just adds to the characters of the book. The different stories are well thought out and interconnected in ways more than just the blast. Its great to see how all the threads meet.
I have two favorites in the stories. One is the last one which finally brings things in a whole circle. The second is the one where a girl tells her younger brother stories. It was so complex yet beautiful. The Scatter Here is Too Great is a cruel, harsh, sad, dark yet true book.
*Note: A copy of this book was provided by Random House India in exchange for an honest review. We thank them.