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Extended Audio Sample The Wish Maker Audiobook, by Ali Sethi Click for printable size audiobook cover
2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 2.00 (388 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Ali Sethi Narrator: Firdous Bamji Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: June 2009 ISBN: 9781101079317
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A brilliant, enthralling debut novel about a fatherless boy growing up in a family of outspoken women in contemporary Pakistan, The Wish Maker is also a tale of sacrifice, betrayal, and indestructible friendship.

Zaki Shirazi and his female cousin Samar Api were raised to consider themselves “part of the same litter.” In a household run by Zaki’s crusading political journalist mother and iron-willed grandmother, it was impossible to imagine a future that could hold anything different for each of them. But when adolescence approaches, the cousins’ fates diverge, and Zaki is forced to question the meaning of family, selfhood, and commitment to those he loves most.

Chronicling world-changing events that have never been so intimately observed in fiction and brimming with unmistakable warmth and humor, The Wish Maker is the powerful account of a family and an era, a story that shows how, even in the most rapidly shifting circumstances, there are bonds that survive the tugs of convention, time, and history.

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Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Erin | 2/12/2014

    " I thought this book was going to tell a beautiful story like The Kite Runner. I learned a bit about the political history of Pakistan which was intresting but the story telling was boring. It really dragged out. It took me forever to get through this book. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Brian | 2/6/2014

    " One of the few books that I really couldn't get interested in. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Pattie | 2/5/2014

    " I could not finish this book. The writing was terrible. The author assumes that the reader knows all about his culture and language. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Terry Perrel | 2/5/2014

    " Fiction. A glimpse of modern day Pakistan that focuses on family and community -- espcially women, its obsession of all things Western, and the fractions caused by the Partition. A good read. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Wendy | 2/5/2014

    " There is nothing I can say that the review Kiersten wrote (August 2009) has not already said. If you get through the first 100 pages and really debate whether or not to continue, you should probably stop. It does not pick up, it does not really change from there. The premise of this story I think had way more potential than the final product, I am sad to say. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Ameena | 2/3/2014

    " This book had so much potential but honestly was so utterly boring. I don't know what went wrong but the author just couldn't pull me in! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Ellen | 1/22/2014

    " I kept waiting for something to happen as this story of a three generations of a Pakistani family lives through the recent events in Pakistan moving from the present in and out of the past from the time of the separation. Telling about the culture, but slow moving. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ashwini Sharma | 1/21/2014

    " A very contemporary observation and I say only observation, of the pakistani society. The character chosen as the protagonist is a very young lad who just returned from America. This was important, perhaps Ali sethi just wanted to put down to words all things that is contemporary Pakistan and the struggles within the familial and social relationships, without making too many judgments. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 padmaparna | 1/20/2014

    " Great insight into Pakistan's history, an area I have always been intrigued about. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Amira | 1/17/2014

    " it was really well written and i like the look in modern Pakistan it gave. the story itself was a bit dragged, it takes a while to intrigue but overall i was satisfied. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Delight | 1/8/2014

    " I picked this book up after reading Sethi's "Modern Love" essay in the NYT, but this book was a disappointment. Boring with a very slow plotline and characters that I didn't care about. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Amanda | 12/28/2013

    " Didn't finish. By the 99th page I wasn't intrigued. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Carolyn | 11/29/2013

    " Not as good as "The Kite Runner" or "A Thousand Splendid Suns" but still an insight into life in that region of the world. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Gretchen | 11/18/2013

    " I found it very hard to get into, slow, and kind of boring. I think I read abotu 100 pages before I decided to quit (and before I had to return it to the library). "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Byebye | 9/17/2013

    " The language in this book was frequently clunky and awkward. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Hena | 3/18/2013

    " An interesting book and story that never quite took off for me. The only bits I liked were the flashbacks with the mum and Daadi. But those who are clueless about Pakistan seem to love the book for some reason...big surprise. I've read better books. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Barb | 2/24/2013

    " Loved it at the start but the story began to drag 2/3 of the way through. Beautifully written but a bit of a disappointment over all. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 David Grieve | 11/7/2012

    " Well written and interesting against the political backdrop of Pakistan but ultimatley unengaging and too rambling for me. Most interesting for the light it sheds on a fiarly well to do family and their life in Lahore. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Rekha Chaudhary | 9/10/2012

    " This book drags on with a non compelling ending. The characters are well developed but who cares because nothing important happens. The history is interesting but hard to follow if you know nothing about Pakistani culture or pakistans history. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Julie Gamez | 7/30/2012

    " Excellent snapshot of life in Pakistan. Interesting characters and relationships. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Allie | 5/24/2012

    " This was a book about a boy who grew up in Pakistan. The history of the country was interesting, but the story wasn't that great. It wasn't nearly as good as The Kite Runner. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Amy | 2/18/2012

    " Zzzzzzzzz.....If you liked "Love in the Time of Cholera," you'll love "The Wish Maker". "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Nathalie | 7/3/2011

    " I couldn't even finish it. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Miko | 6/29/2011

    " I was disappointed by this book with a beautiful cover and promising quote from author of kite runner. I found it difficult to get in to and ended up just breezing through the end to finish it. Disappointing. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Erin | 2/3/2011

    " I thought this book was going to tell a beautiful story like The Kite Runner. I learned a bit about the political history of Pakistan which was intresting but the story telling was boring. It really dragged out. It took me forever to get through this book. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Julie | 1/1/2011

    " The was definitely not the book I was hoping it to be based on the back flap. Don't compare this to Kite Runner!
    This was the slowest book I have read in a long time. Very disappointed. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Darlene | 7/29/2010

    " Robotic characters that I don't think the author even cared about. I certainly didn't and didn't finish the book. It had no other redeeming qualities. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Ellen | 6/26/2010

    " I kept waiting for something to happen as this story of a three generations of a Pakistani family lives through the recent events in Pakistan moving from the present in and out of the past from the time of the separation. Telling about the culture, but slow moving. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Catherine | 6/19/2010

    " The insights into life in Pakistan were interesting, but this book was a bit plotless. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Byebye | 5/3/2010

    " The language in this book was frequently clunky and awkward. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jorie | 4/5/2010

    " This book was good, but a little hard to get into. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 padmaparna | 3/2/2010

    " Great insight into Pakistan's history, an area I have always been intrigued about. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mckinleyinterns | 2/17/2010

    " This book was one of my favorite, i loved the way teh author wrote and how nicely it was set up. The think the ending was greatt. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Perrel | 2/13/2010

    " Fiction. A glimpse of modern day Pakistan that focuses on family and community -- espcially women, its obsession of all things Western, and the fractions caused by the Partition. A good read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Carolyn | 2/11/2010

    " Not as good as "The Kite Runner" or "A Thousand Splendid Suns" but still an insight into life in that region of the world. "

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About the Author

Ali Sethi grew up in Pakistan in a family of dissenting journalists and publishers. A recent Harvard graduate, he has contributed to The New York Times and The Nation among other publications. He currently lives in Lahore.

About the Narrator

Firdous Bamji has appeared in numerous plays in New York and across the country and played the title role in William Shakespeare’s Othello. He has played leading parts in world and American premiere productions of plays by noted playwrights, including Tom Stoppard, Tony Kushner, Eric Bogosian, and Rebecca Gilman. He has also had guest starring parts on Law & Order and Law & Order: SVU, and he was nominated for the Independent Spirit Award as Best Supporting Actor for his work in the film The War Within.