Think of Salman Rashid and you think of legends like Riders on the Wind, Sea Monsters, the Sun God, The Apricot Road to Yarkand
, Prisoner in the Bus or jhelum: City of the Vitasta
Salman Rashid with Lady Nadira and Sir Vidya Naipaul on 18 December 2012 on the patio of our home in Lahore
Meet Salman Rashid and it is always a personal event. Each time I meet him, I try to dig deep and undo certain myths about places in Pakistan – country he knows like a palm of his hand. This time (February 13, 2013) we met and discussed his new book of days titled Stones of Empire
In Stones of Empire - a book of days for 2013- Salman Rashid reveals some of our built heritage we can still preserve and be rightly proud of. The diary contains vivid description of Governor House, Peshawar, Lawrence and Robert Montgomery Halls, Lahore, Sadiqgarh Palace, Dera Nawab, Sind Madrassatul Islam, Karachi, Gymkhana Cricket Pavilion Lahore, a house at 4 – Chaudhry Khaliquzaman Road, Karachi, Collectorate Building, Larkana, Police office Building, Jacobabad, Gurdwara Rori Sahib, Eminabad, Islamia College Peshawar, Mahal Nagar Mal, Minchinabad, Khan of Kalat Residence, Kalat; written chronologically and supported by imagery that speaks.
Reading the stories of these magnificent pieces of our living built heritage, it seems as if Salman Rashid has been living all his life there. He knows the fine art of telling a story. He gives an angle that turns simplest of stories in to an irresistible one. His descriptive narratives turn readers into ‘viewers.’
Salman Rashid is a writer, historian and a witness with three matchless gifts: he is passionate; he is a reader of amazing erudition; and a writer of breathtaking prose. All three talents shine brightly in print and his words evoke places, bringing past to present. He blends acute insights and warm intuitions into uniquely fluent, imperturbable and evocative descriptions. That is why Sir Vidya Naipaul says, “Salman Rashid writes with wonderful clarity.”
Idea of turning a book of days into a ‘book’ that is collectors delight as well as an excellent read is very powerful. This speaks of sense of social responsibility of Pakistan Petroleum Limited (PPL) - a corporation that is publishing readable books of days since 2009. The idea shows how to take an open road.
Salman rashid - writer and the Fellow of Royal Geographical Society - has always been an inspiration and a very dear “Sir Gi” to me. From now on he is my keyword as well.
Related: Wheels of Empire
, Roads Less Travelled
Labels: Books, Salman Rashid, Stones of Empire
posted by S A J Shirazi @ Thursday, February 14, 2013,
Jalal Hameed said...
Good to see you meeting Mr Salman - he certainly is a living travelogue of Pakistan. I wish to meet him some day.
Saima Ashraf said...
Nice to see the man with and from history.
Kausar Bilal said...
An interesting post! Wish to read the amazing travelogues written by Mr. Salman.
M Behzad Jhatial said...
goot to see atleast some one preserving the legendry idealists... worth appreciating sir....
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