There is an ancient saying that when lovers fall out, a plane goes down. This is the story of one such plane. Why did a Hercules C130, the world's sturdiest plane, carrying Pakistan's military dictator General Zia ul Haq, go down on 17 August, 1988? Was it because of:
1.Mechanical failure 2.Human error 3.The CIA's impatience 4.A blind woman's curse 5.Generals not happy with their pension plans 6.The mango season
Or could it be your narrator, Ali Shigri?
Teasing, provocative, and very, very funny, Mohammed Hanif's debut novel takes one of the subcontinent's enduring mysteries and out if it spins a tale as rich and colourful as a beggar's dream.
Winner of the Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best First Novel and shortlisted for the Booker Prize 2008.
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Zesty, highly inventive...Hanif is a gifted writer...His explosive finale is brilliantly constructed - Daily Mail
Exuberant and satirical: this is an angry comedy about Zia's brutal legacy to Pakistan - Observer
Witty, elegaic and deliciously anarchic -
A Pakistan not reducible to generals, jets and jihadisa...a debut novel shaped as much by the subcontinents fascination with history and historical figures as by political thrillers in the tradition of Forsyth and Le Carre.... Along the way there is plenty of humour and slapstick... Cadet life is entertainingly evoked, overflowing with japes, jerkoffs, hashish highs and liquored lows... The most unexpected aspect of Mangoes is also its most compelling - the wryly told story of a love affair between two cadets - Guardian
Entertaining.... darkly comic.... There are sharply observed sketches of toadying ministers, mindlessly efficient security chiefs, filthy prison cells, sex-mad Arab sheikhs and erudite communist prisoners...as a piece of political satire, A Case of Exploding Mangoes deserves a high mark - Independent
Unputdownable and darkly hilarious. Mohammed Hanif is a brave, gifted writer -
Grimly, intelligently comic as if written by an Asian Joseph Heller - Daily Telegraph
If this rich stew of disparate ingredients puts you in mind of Salman Rushdie, you wouldn't be far from the truth. His work, along with that of Gabriel Garcia Marquez and Joseph Heller, is a low-key but persistent influence - Sunday Times
An exciting, accomplished new literary voice - Irish Times
A very funny satire-cum-thriller - Sunday Telegraph Seven
Somewhere in mid-air between Waugh and Rushdie (with an shade of Catch 22 hovering near by) this tremendous novel makes a tragicomic weather all its own - The Independent
Justly Booker longlisted last year, this debut is a dazzling one-off - The Observer
Provocative and comic debut. - The Times
A true touch of originality ... showcases a promising new talent. - Sunday Herald
Mohammed Hanif was born in Okara, Pakistan, in 1965. He graduated from Pakistan Air Force Academy as Pilot Officer, but subsequently left to pursue a career in journalism. He has written plays for the stage and BBC radio, and his film The Long Night has been shown at film festivals around the world. His first novel, A Case of Exploding Mangoes, won the Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best First Novel in 2008.