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Publisher's Summary

There is a saying that when lovers fall out, a plane goes down.

A Case of Exploding Mangoes is the story of one such plane. Why did a Hercules C130, the world's sturdiest aircraft, carrying Pakistan's military dictator General Zia ul Haq, go down on 17 August, 1988?

Was it because of: mechanical failure; human error; the CIA's impatience; a blind woman's curse; generals not happy with their pension plans; the mango season? Or could it be your narrator, Ali Shigri?

Teasing, provocative, and 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.

©2008 Mohammed Hanif; (P)2008 W F Howes Ltd

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Time Capsule

I was a kid growing up in India when Pakistan's president Zia Ul Haq was killed in an airplane crash, and the event was a huge news item of the time. I still have the echoes of that news somewhere in my back pocket. Finding this book was brilliant on that front but I noted that even if I was not aware of the whole incident I'd had enjoyed the book equally because the book is written with excellent pace and great character development.

The narration gives soul to the book and makes is unputdownable. An excellent little piece of work.

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  • Story

Starts well but then drones on and on

Is there anything you would change about this book?

The last few chapters are unnecessary and seem to indicate the author's inability to end the story.

Any additional comments?

Hilarious otherwise. Its rare to come across a book that makes you laugh.

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An absolute pleasurable presentation of facts wrapped in humour

The narrator gave life to the characters with as pert performance of accents, tone, language, idiosyncrasies of character and personalities.
The author was very good at the military terminology and representation of the characters to their real life personalities. I say this because many of these were known to my parent's personally and I lived in Pakistan at the time.
Some of the sexual details of two characters, I found to be in bad taste.

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  • Mark
  • 01-14-15

whatever happened to blind Zenab?

Would you listen to A Case of Exploding Mangoes again? Why?

I never listen to books more than once

What did you like best about this story?

I could feel the heat of the sun and the tension in the air. great story, well told well read. I want to visit Pakistan now!

What does Paul Bhattacharjee bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

His voice and accent fitted the story and enriched my experience

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The very surprising love scene...no spoilers

Any additional comments?

I am still captivated by the story one week after finishing it, it made my trips to work in the car fly by

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Boggy of Bucks
  • 01-11-15

Splendid

Entirely believable tale of Pakistani life under the first post-colonial military rule, written from the perspective of the leader and a lowly member of the military who has reason to bear a grudge. A beautifully written, gently and cleverly funny story.

The narration was pitch perfect for the characters and for the pace and style of the writing.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Kariesa
  • 03-03-15

Delightful!

If you could sum up A Case of Exploding Mangoes in three words, what would they be?

absolutely loved this book! the narrator was excellent, the story intriguing, witty and funny. definitely recommended.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • airhugs
  • 11-28-17

good but somewhat anti-climactic

Very well read and a captivating story but ends with a bit of an anti-climax. Worth the credit though and I may try Hanif's other book on Audible.