THE END OF INNOCENCE
‘Moni Mohsin’s accomplished and moving first novel deals not only with the aftermath of a dangerous love, but with its effects on an entire community; retribution, revenge, and the terrible complicity of the heedless in the destruction of innocence. Deeply sensitive to nuances of class and gender, she dissects the diseased psyche of an "honour killer", showing with patient insight how such crimes are often not so much the result of premeditation as spontaneous violence, with family and clan members conspiring to cover up what has been done rather than colluding with the murderer’s action.
‘The End of Innocence is unusual in its setting: the rural farmland? West Punjab, delineated in its changing colours and seasons with the minimal brush strokes of a Japanese artist. The simple, sensual prose reflects the multilingual world in which Its child protagonist lives, moving easily from western references to translations of local proverbs and citations of folklore.’ —Aamer Hussein, The Independent, London
‘Pakistan-born Londoner, Moni Mohsin’s debut novel is an utterly engrossing tale of innocence lost. Mohsin vividly recreates the atmosphere of rural Pakistan in all its variety, from the smell of sugarcane to the cool shadows of Laila’s elegant home. The reports of political strife never intrude too far into the story of Sabzbagh’s residents but the worried gossip of adults about their government’s actions add a faint air of menace and a hint of violence and sorrow to come.
‘Eager, warm-hearted and bright, without being precocious, Laila is an appealing young heroine. In fact, all the characters are convincingly drawn, even those with the potential to descend into caricature are well-rounded and believable.
‘Moving, warm and compulsively readable, The End of Innocence is a very promising debut.’—Anna Carey, The Irish Examiner
‘Moni Mohsin’s debut is an absorbing take on The Go-Between set in rural Pakistan in 1971. Mohsin balances an enjoyable polyphony of characters — the wizened old servant, the jolly ex-pat, the flustered nun — as she depicts an idyllic milieu under threat. This is an assured, emotionally engaging novel.’ — Richard Godwin, Literary Review, London
‘The End of Innocence is set in 1 970s Pakistan, a world of vibrant colour, rich smells and savage civil wait Mohsin uses words like a palette to paint a vivid picture of the country she grew up in. Themes synonymous with another world — honour killings, family honour-collide with the universal consequences of exposed secrets. This is a beautifully written work which promises to be a real success.’ — Melissa Thompson, The Big Issue, London
Publisher: VANGUARD BOOKS