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Extended Audio Sample The Wandering Falcon, by Jamil Ahmad Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (671 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Jamil Ahmad Narrator: Piter Marek Publisher: Recorded Books, LLC Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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A haunting literary debut set in the forbidding remote tribal areas of Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Traditions that have lasted for centuries, both brutal and beautiful, create a rigid structure for life in the wild, astonishing place where Iran, Pakistan, and Afghanistan meet-the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA). It is a formidable world, and the people who live there are constantly subjected to extremes of place and of culture.

The Wandering Falcon begins with a young couple, refugees from their tribe, who have traveled to the middle of nowhere to escape the cruel punishments meted out upon those who transgress the boundaries of marriage and family. Their son, Tor Baz, descended from both chiefs and outlaws, becomes “The Wandering Falcon,” a character who travels among the tribes, over the mountains and the plains, into the towns and the tents that constitute the homes of the tribal people. The media today speak about this unimaginably remote region, a geopolitical hotbed of conspiracies, drone attacks, and conflict, but in the rich, dramatic tones of a master storyteller, this stunning, honor-bound culture is revealed from the inside.

Jamil Ahmad has written an unforgettable portrait of a world of custom and compassion, of love and cruelty, of hardship and survival, a place fragile, unknown, and unforgiving.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “A striking debut…The power and beauty of these stories are unparalleled in most fiction to come out of south Asia.” Guardian
  • “A shadowy, enchanting journey…A gripping book, as important for illuminating the current state of this region as it is timeless in its beautiful imagery and rhythmic prose.”

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

  • Selected for the October 2012 Indie Next List
  • Nominated for the Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Award
  • A Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2011
  • Nominated for the 2011 Man Asian Literary Prize

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Rida Tahir | 2/20/2014

    " its full of quotable quotes! what a brilliant way to describe the neglected part of the Pakistani world! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Jon | 2/19/2014

    " The narrative in this book is really random, but it kept me interested right to the end, and I feel like I understand tribal life in Afghanistan and Pakistan a whole lot better. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 by Marvin | 2/18/2014

    " Think of an old man telling stories about various tribes in the borderlands where Pakistan, Iran, and Afghanistan come together, and you'll have a pretty good idea of the nature of this book. Told in simple prose, there's no continuous development. One character appears in every chapter, but usually as a minor character and sometimes merely as a cameo; we certainly never get to know him. We do learn something about the tribal cultures in that region and the challenges they faced roughly at mid-20th century (the timeline is vague), which makes it a worthwhile, short read, but as a novel it's not very satisfying. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Kb | 2/14/2014

    " I actually give it 3.5 stars. The book seemed more like a collection of short stories that are only loosely connected. But each gives a tantalizing glimpse of bleak lives of the tribes that live on the border of Afghanistan and Pakistan. "

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About the Author
Author Jamil Ahmad

Jamil Ahmad began his career in the Middle East in the 1950s, only to become an official in the Pakistani embassy in Kabul at the time of the Soviet invasion in 1979. His wife later encouraged him to write, and she typed his handwritten manuscript on a typewriter with German keys. He lives in Islamabad, Pakistan.