Pakistani-American author Soniah Kamal has released her debut novel An Isolated Incident in Pakistan. A saga of loss, love, and survival set in Kashmir, Pakistan, Afghanistan and America, An Isolated Incident explores how to survive the most devastating losses of all-- the loss of family and ideals. More than 20 years in the making, Soniah conceived the idea in her youth. Shetook the next several years to develop the story, and she finally began to write it after promisingher late Kashmiri grandfather that she would write about Kashmir.
Speaking about the book, Soniah Kamal said “I wanted to explore the role of silence, and speaking up, in memory and history both personal and collective. As for inspiration – the maternal side of my family is from Srinagar and one summer, relatives visiting Lahore related how difficult life in Kashmir was (at the time) and that a late night knock could very well mean death or even worse. I could not get the ‘even worse’ out of my mind and the story and Zari’s character were born in tandem. Billy was born when a schoolmate’s brother ran off to become a ‘freedom fighter.’ This was a boy from an affluent family, he’d studied at elite schools, was a stellar student, was supposed to make his mark on the world- only, not in the way he did, and I saw how his act changed his family. Then it was just a matter of bringing these two worlds together.”
In his endorsement of An Isolated Incident, KhaledHosseini, acclaimed author of The Kite Runnersays, “Soniah Kamal has written a riveting and deeply engaging novel about the longstanding turmoil in Kashmir and the multi-generational impact of the conflict on one ordinary family. With remarkable poise and elegant, precise prose, Kamal explores identity and exile, hope and disillusionment, and the myriad fault lines in the lives of the people living in the shadow of war. A wonderful novel.”
After being released in India by publishing house Fingerprints!, An Isolated Incidentis now available in Lahore at Readings, Variety Books, Ferozsons and Vanguard Books; in Karachi at Speedy Books, Liberty Books, Say Publications and Fazli Sons; and in Islamabad at Saeed Book Bank, Mr. Books and Variety Books at PKR 595. The book is also available online on Libertybooks.com, 786cart.com, Uread.com, Flipkart.com and Amazon.in.