31 October, 2020

Fasana Of A Fragrant Guldasta

Not only is this excellent collection a roster of the greats, it’s also a diachronic run through the Urdu short story from its earliest years

Fasana Of A Fragrant Guldasta

An often used analogy for anthologies is the one about the gardener who plucks the choicest blo­­oms from his garden and puts together the loveliest of bou­­quets. Since he knows his garden so well, he is seen as the best judge of what should go into the making of the guldasta; yet he is not expec­ted to be objective and his choice is governed as much by personal liking as availability. So it is with editors of ant­hologies. But when the editor is Muh­ammad Umar Memon, veteran critic, translator and academic, you know that his selection is likely to be the best. And when he selects and translates a collection called The Greatest Urdu Stories Ever Told, you take him for his word. And you will not be disappointed.

For, found within the pages of this aqua-­covered, beautifully-produced volume are some old favourites and several new and amazing discoveries. There are the sto­­ries many of us have read: Manto’s Toba Tek Singh, Rajinder Singh Bedi’s Lajwanti, Ahsfaq Ahmad’s The...



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