Broken Threads by Mishal Husain, Paperback, 9780008531690 | Buy online at The Nile
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Broken Threads

My Family from Empire to Independence

Author: Mishal Husain  

Paperback

'One of the best memoirs I've read in years’ SATHNAM SANGHERA'As moving as it is important’ PETER FRANKOPAN‘Beautifully written, emotional and deeply personal, yet universal … One can't help but be moved by this story of upheaval and transformation’ SADIQ KHAN

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Summary

'One of the best memoirs I've read in years’ SATHNAM SANGHERA'As moving as it is important’ PETER FRANKOPAN‘Beautifully written, emotional and deeply personal, yet universal … One can't help but be moved by this story of upheaval and transformation’ SADIQ KHAN

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Description

‘I witnessed the dwindling glow of the British Empire. I saw small men entrusted with great jobs, playing with the destiny of millions’
Mishal Husain always knew that the lives of her four grandparents changed forever in 1947, as the new nation states of India and Pakistan were born. But what she had was a partial story, a patchwork of memories and anecdotes: hurried departures, lucky escapes from violence and homes never seen again.

Decades later, the fragment of an old sari sent her on a journey through time using letters, diaries, memoirs and audio tapes to trace four lives shaped by the Raj, a world war, independence and partition.

Mumtaz rejects the marriage arranged for him as he forges a life with Mary, a devout Catholic from a struggling Anglo-Indian family, while Tahirah and Shahid watch the politics of pre-partition Delhi unfold at close quarters. As freedom comes, bonds fray and communities are divided, leaving two couples to forge new identities, while never forgetting the shared heritage of the past.

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Critic Reviews

'[A] superb family history that teems with historical colour and details that both fascinate and shock … Broken Threads is a calm and compassionate tale; but it also offers an accessible primer on a little-understood area of recent world history’DAILY TELEGRAPH

‘Mishal Husain weaves an intricate family web that catches all the hope and optimism, as well as the tragedy and disappointment of the birth of Pakistan and independent India in 1947. With clarity, warmth and profound sympathy, as well as some brilliant archival detective work, she performs a fascinating act of reconstruction’ WILLIAM DALRYMPLE

‘At times this book feels like vital history, which just happens to read like a great novel. At other times, it reads like a novel that just happens to inform us about great history’ SATHNAM SANGHERA

‘The most important and accessible book I have ever read about the days leading up to and surrounding the partition of India. I read it as one would a thriller, a page-turner; a fabulous achievement by a skilled writer, packed with facts but floating like a butterfly’ JOANNA LUMLEY

'A love story and an extraordinary personal journey set against some of the greatest upheavals of the 21st century … As moving as it is important’ PETER FRANKOPAN

‘An unflinching portrait of a family splintered by partition. Husain’s beautifully written family memoir examines the shared trauma that so many families like hers endured, finding hope and compassion in one of South Asia’s darkest chapters’ JEMIMA KHAN

‘The play between darkness and light, the assiduous research and emotional literacy makes Broken Threads one of the best books ever on the epochs that shaped three nations. A triumph’ i News

‘A deeply engrossing book … I was completely gripped by it’ India Knight

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About the Author

Mishal Husain is one of the presenters of BBC Radio 4's influential Today programme and the television news on BBC One. Her work has taken her from Davos to Rohingya refugee camps and from interviewing Prime Ministers to Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. Mishal has been named by the Sunday Times as one of the 500 most influential people in Britain. Born in the UK in 1973, she grew up in the Middle East and was later educated at Cambridge University, where she read law.

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Product Details

Publisher
HarperCollins Publishers | Fourth Estate Ltd
Published
6th June 2024
Pages
336
ISBN
9780008531690

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