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Best of Manto: A Collection of his Short Stories
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Best of Manto: A Collection of his Short Stories

4.18 of 5 stars 4.18  ·  rating details  ·  470 ratings  ·  29 reviews
English translation of short stories.
Hardcover, 158 pages
Published 1989 by Sterling Publishers (first published 1940)
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D. Biswas
It is possible to review some books without a mention of the context in which they were written, but it is impossible to do so with the works of Saadat Hasan Manto, a writer born in undivided India, who died in Pakistan.

Had he lived, he would have turned 100 last year, but he drank himself to death at the age of 43, eight years after the Partition that created India and Pakistan, after a series of trials where his writing was charged with obscenity. This was one of the best periods of his work,
Mind Blowing!! Epic!! Out of the world! Do I need say more? Manto has a way of pinning his readers by spinning an intricate delicate web of comfort and abundance and opulence of his words. I was drawn into that seduction, that sweat, that fear, that sensual grasp of human nature. His work reminds me constantly of Henry Miller but it would be blasphemous to categorize Manto among any of his western contemporaries. I just want to believe that he wrote all that out boldly while staying with in the ...more
The Book Outline
MANTO: selected short stories is a collection of twelve short stories from an author widely regarded as one of the greatest short story writers of the subcontinent. Saadat Hasan Manto is now, a hundred years after his birth, also acknowledged as one of the most powerful voices of our time. Originally written in Urdu, minimal in style and form, the stories focus on corners of human psychology. The stories reflect the author’s understanding of human nature, wants and urges. Partition and subsequen ...more
Harleen Arneja
Can't get enough of Manto's writing. Riveting, enthralling...many of his pieces leave you feeling almost exploited, but there is no way one can stop reading. Truly a legend, he deserves more credit for his progressive and honest writing.
Jeff Ridenour
This is an amazing compilation of short stories. Manto writes in Urdu during the Indian partition. If you can get your hands on it, read it.
Ck Vinod
Well, I would like to sincerely thank the guys at Brunch, the weekly Sunday magazine of The Hindustan Times (edition dated 27.7.2014). Manto, a great writer who lies forgotten. But, I am sure the lustre will not get buried as it is destined to shine. Such moving stories which will definitely stir your soul. Aatish Taseer has done a marvellous job in translating the great writer's work in English - otherwise, readers like me who do not know the Urdu script would have been bereft of the writings o ...more
Manto Phir Se

As a reader I give myself the right to judge who is the best and who does justice to his job. But in this case I refuse to do so, its Manto after all. I would respect and adore anyone who becomes a medium for me to reach Manto, to read his works. I don’t understand Urdu, so without these translators Manto would have been just a name to me. Also how can I say which translator is best, its Manto I associate these stories with. None of these translators can ever take the credit or im
Saadat Hassan Manto was one of the epic writers of his time, whose reign can still be felt. Throughout his life he fought for intellectual freedom. He was just 43 when he died, but he made it pretty sure that this world will remember him by his writing. His short stories have reality in them. These stories had captured the sublime essence of the period before, during and after partition. This book is translated by Aatish Taseer, who have been gifted the art of writing through his heritage. He ha ...more
As it happens with a lot of collections, some stories are really good. But then some of them are just okayish. So the 3 stars are more for the compilation than Manto as a writer.
Manto is a great story writer. His stories are both captivating and thrilling. His stories portray the vibrant, culturally diverse and colorful aspects of the Indian subcontinent, all the while depicting the grim, harsh and cruel realities of ordinary life. I fell in love with Licence and The Mice of Shah Daulah.

Manto is not afraid to highlight the gross and repugnant aspects of our society. His work is an inspiration for freethinkers who want to bring a positive change to the society.

Reading Ma
Jaasindah Mir
If you havent read Manto, this book especially you've lost the use of being able to read a book. It is compulsively readable. Taseer is undoubtedly the best ever translator. I loved every wprd Manto has written. I wish Taseer would translate more of Manto's works. My most favourite book till date. I seem to have a Manto Hangover. I am thinking like his characters. I try to find his characters in every person I see. I have become a small Manto at heart myself. Ah! Wish I had read him before. Grab ...more
Vaqas Umair
True to himself, true to you, this is Manto dude!
Raghav Modi
They just don't make 'em like Manto anymore. Manto's translated short stories are a true revelation as he tackles issues of war and partition between india and Pakistan along with social issues of women empowerment. His honesty might have gotten him into trouble but his bluntness makes him one of the best reads ever. Full review of the book can be read here -
Harleen Arneja
Can't get enough of Manto's writing. Riveting, enthralling...many of his pieces leave you feeling almost exploited, but there is no way one can stop reading. Truly a legend, he deserves more credit for his progressive and honest writing.
Beautifully translated!
Rajesh S Shirali
A completely indie approach to writing- Fresh and un-ornate look at low lives, the aftermath of partition and the darker side of un-low lives.Unbelievable that this was published in the 40s.
Very depressing and dak in many ways..
Neha Gupta
The penguin edition has choicest short stories by Manto one wouldn't want to miss but the original urdu definitely stands out.
Personal favorites are
A woman of all seasons, khol do and the odour.
Lanza Vasto
is words can show the impact of a war.. if your answer is no.. read manto, some impacts are prescribe in very few sentences.. he travels thru the indo-pak war period.. its a gem in my shelf..
There is none other as good as even close to Manto when it comes to short stories. This wonderful, sensitive translation by my favorite writer Aatish Taseer - made it an enjoyable read.
writes about the daily mundane things, capturing the nuances amazingly well. highly recommended if one likes to delve in the minds of ordinary people.
Aman Bhatnagar
Controversial topics, simple writing and heart wrenching stories. Great translation and introduction by Taseer.
Mah-i-kan Kurd
Mannnn Manto yaarrrrr. Found a favourite after a year and a half. Must read yo.
Pooja Singha
a true collection of masterpices that makes you feel closer to the reality
Zeeshan Ahmed
What an amazing book. Filled with brilliant 'afsanay' by Manto.
The only thing I regret is not having read them in Urdu.
Siva Karan
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
i want any story on paistani culture
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Saadat Hasan Manto, the most widely read and the most controversial short-story writer in Urdu, was born on 11 May 1912 at Sambrala in Punjab's Ludhiana District. In a writing career spanning over two decades he produced twenty-two collections of short stories, one novel, five collections of radio plays, three collections of essays, two collections of reminiscences and many scripts for films. He w ...more
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Toba Tek Singh: Stories Kingdom's End: Selected Stories Bitter Fruit: The Very Best of Saadat Hasan Manto Mottled Dawn; Fifty Sketches and Stories of Partition Bombay Stories

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