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Noon: A Novel
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Noon: A Novel

2.92  ·  Rating Details ·  211 Ratings  ·  39 Reviews
Rehan Tabassum has grown up in a world of privilege in Delhi. His mother and her new husband embody the dazzling emergent India everyone is talking about. His real father, however, is a virtual stranger to him: a Pakistani Muslim who lives across the border and owns a vast telecommunications empire called Qasimic Call.

As Rehan contemplates his future, he finds himself beco
Paperback, 304 pages
Published October 2nd 2012 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (first published January 1st 2011)
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(showing 1-30)
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Loved the prose, but failed to make sense of the story...
this is what I understood :
post independence India and Pakistan of 70s and 80s. A young boy born out of a dysfunctional union between an Indian Sikh mother, Pakistani Muslim father, and who is influenced by Hindu idolatry is the main character. His lawyer mother remarried a rich Industrialist, similarly affluent father has married and divorced at Least a couple more times.
The boy is in search of his identity, and is sort of keen to meet hi
Sep 29, 2011 Pia rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I hadn't read Taseer's Temple-Goers, but when I saw this book in the advance reading section of a bookshop, I couldn't help but snatch it up. I was truly disappointed. Perhaps my folly was attempting to read it while on a vacation in a tropical land, but I found the chapters disjointed and the protagonist extremely difficult to support. Was this his story, or his mother's new husband's? Was this a story about him finding his father who had abandoned him at an early age, because his father doesn' ...more
It's a 2,5 actually. It reads like something I've read before - which I have. Taseer's autobiographical Stranger to History is really the base of this book too. The Indian mother, Pakistani father etc. And the morally corrupt modern India and Pakistan he writes about in Noon, while sounding true does not pull you in, the way it does in Adiga's White Tiger or Suketu Mehta's Maximum City or even a Mohsin Hamid's How to get filthy rich in rising Asia. What you sense is a distinct lack of empathy wi ...more
Daniel Lowen
I read a great review of this book when it first came out, so I was set up for disappointment. It's a quasi-autobiographical novel about a boy with a Pakistani father and Indian mother, and so there are two large parts to the book -- one in India and one in Pakistan. And they don't seem to have much to do with each other, and the boy doesn't really take his experience in one place to the other place. It reads like someone who's been told his life is really interesting and he should make it into ...more
Jan 29, 2014 Bachyboy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I really lost my way in this book but carried on because I had bought it! I struggled with the relevance of the three sections and being set in India and Pakistan I had high hopes for something better.
Aug 25, 2011 Mamta rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A disappointing read. Glimpses of promise were quickly dashed away by an almost indifferent treatment of a tired and overdone subject.
Oct 26, 2014 Neha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
You write what you see, yet tell what you don't!

This applies to Aatish Taseer's 'Noon' completely. In this book, he beautifully traces his journey from India to America to Pakistan as an audience as well as a participant. His journey from confused and insecure childhood to an adult searching identity and roots, from the corridors of ever changing power house Delhi to a volatile and extremist Port Bin Qasim, from a Hindu/ Sikh upbringing to the Muslim roots. There are gaps but they don't matter
This novel had a lot of material to work with, upper class society in India, upper class society in Pakistan, the differences and relations between the two, sexuality and homosexuality in Pakistan, the inner workings of a telecommunications conglomerate in Pakistan, etc. But it turned out to be just a tale of an overprivileged, entitled, lazy young man having an epiphany about his complicity in social ills, and about a spoiled man who suffers emotionally because of estrangement from his father. ...more
Jun 22, 2013 Louise rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 27, 2015 Ming rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
solidly written but somehow flat and unimaginative (or uninspired). there was this level of snark and smugness that I did not enjoy for I couldn't see a purpose for it
Sashankh Kale
Has an interesting flow; layered characters; a well-crafted story with some good writing.
Jan 03, 2017 Rachel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book exemplified the split between the educated upper classes in India and Pakistan and the less well educated and working class. Corruption was a main theme as well.
The story itself was a bit disjointed as it was told in chapters in different times and place but did get to the heart of the matter. I would have enjoyed more character development but am glad I read this.
Weightless but not pointless.

After following news of Salman Taseer's death fairly closely, I was surprised to see his son's byline in a passionate WSJ editorial criticizing Pakistan ( It was the first I'd heard of Aatish Tasser, and I was impressed and intrigued. When Noon got a pretty lousy review in The New York Times, I lowered my opinion of Taseer slightly, but I had to revise it again after I saw him speak at a Granta event with Siddhartha Deb. Tho
Mar 16, 2013 Leah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Compelling storytelling

This book is more a collection of short stories than a novel, showing as it does distinct episodes in the life of Rehan Tabassum set several years apart. Written sometimes in the first-person and sometimes in the third, we see Rehan first as a young man on his way to meet his father who abandoned his mother when Rehan was too young to remember him. The following four chapters focus on incidents in Rehan’s life from when he was a child until the present when he is a young
Vrixton Phillips
Absolutely riveting; I read it in two sittings [which is saying something because I'm usually lucky to finish a book at all, much less finish it quickly].

The premise isn't exactly compelling stuff to your average Westerner: Rehan Tabassum grows up in a changing India and later sees violence and extremism in a Pakistani port-city. However, it does give a Westerner a lot to contemplate, particularly towards the end.

In Chapter 3 there's a robbery and Rehan narrates the tale of how discrimination p
Kiran Watwani
It flits from one country to another and follows 4 disconnected incidents in Rehan Tabassum's charmed life - 2 in India and 2 in Pakistan. The India ones (One about little Rehan and his single Mom moving from their grandma's and the other about a grown up Rehan trying to work with Delhi authorities to get to the bottom of a household theft) are actually intriguing. The little Rehan one can't help but adore and sympathize with, the older, spineless Rehan in India one tends to despise but it still ...more
Sep 20, 2012 Amanda rated it liked it
Shelves: won-gr
Goodreads Synopsis:
Rehan Tabassum has grown up in a world of privilege in Delhi. His mother and her new husband embody the dazzling emergent India everyone is talking about. His real father, however, is a virtual stranger to him: a Pakistani Muslim who lives across the border and owns a vast telecommunications empire called Qasimic Call.

As Rehan contemplates his future, he finds himself becoming unmoored. Leaving the familiarity of home for Pakistan in an attempt to get closer to his father, he
Jun 02, 2013 Murtaza rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Story at page 200 is totally crap
Of, a tow cays later, a wedding massacre in Smv| h
pictures wore awful: images of the young couple conn.vM,v}
with scenes of butchery and chaos, the red and goM ^ ^
Wedding lehnga stained with the deeper red ot brutal Mv\m
But once more, the motive for, in this case, tr.Urmdc w.,v
mvstifving: the girl's brother and friends had turned on \\\y
wedding party with axes upon discovering that not ,i vnv^W
member of the groom's side could convert simple Urdu noutu
into their pl
When a book is endorsed by V.S. Naipul it raises high expectations, but I did not feel Noon was as unforgettable and compelling as I hoped it would be.
The novel describes four episodes of the narrator’s life from 1989 to 2011. The first section portrays Rehan living with his squabbling mother and grandmother. The second is about a glamorous dinner party in honour of the Rajamata, who humiliates the host by arriving late. The wealthy nouveau riche plans his revenge years later. The third part de
Nov 10, 2012 Akshat rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This was one of those books which showed a lot of promise, but overall was a little disappointing. Throughout much of the reading, I was kept interested but the book failed to live up to the hype and expectations.

Aatish Taseer's description of the lives of Delhi's elite socialites brought back memories for me. I could personally associate with many of the characters described in that portion of the book. The section about the lives of the Delhi servants was also pretty captivating. However, what
May 17, 2013 Aurina rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Even though it claims to be a novel, the chapters in Noon are too disjointed to really read as one. Taseer's attempts at weaving together the narrative fall flat. I really did not enjoy the first two chapters that are set in India. Having read other works by Taseer in which he mines his personal life for material, they were repetitive and uninteresting. I especially did not like the chapter about his step-father's party because it was too reminiscent of 'Durbar,' written by Taseer's mother Talvi ...more
Aug 04, 2012 JulieSackett rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Author quote: "in writing this last episode, I tried often to see what I had not seen, to be places I had not been, to pretend that my view of Port bin Qasim had not only-and ever- been an eclipsed one. In this, I was like a man, who peeping through a keyhole is denied his vantage point, when leaning too forcefully against the door that has restricted (and excited) his vision, he causes it to swing wide open. A mistake, you see: for what we cannot know is as much a part of us as what we do know. ...more
I enjoyed this book. It doesn't follow a linear fashion, but explores different periods of time in the main character's life. I was able to pick this book up over a period of a few months, and keep reading wherever I had left off without any problem. I thought the story picked up in action/drama about halfway through. The Interesting juxtaposition between the Western world and Indian culture is examined in an offhanded way, but still remains a very interesting component of the book.
Sep 07, 2012 Tara rated it liked it
Shelves: first-reads
Loved the detail, felt like I was right there! Very interesting story and Taseer did a wonderful job describing the scenes and characters. My only dislike of this book is the way the chapters flowed. They didn't seem to come together nicely but instead jumped around and confused me a little. Overall I would recommend this book. I'll be reading this one again!

*I received the book for free through Goodreads First Reads*
Taseer is yet another subcontinent author with a brilliant writing style with flashes of descriptive brilliance escaping the dark depths of the land of No Plot But Too Much Disconnected Angst.

Though the book is beautiful, I feel the Indian subcontinent needs more Hunter Thompsons and Bill Brysons, more Frank Millers and Garth Ennises, and less Stephanie Meyer.
Biju Balakrishnan
Jul 19, 2012 Biju Balakrishnan rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
My first book by Aatish Taseer and I must say the experience has been really bad. The chapters in the book do not link each other, completely disjointed. It makes it all the more confusing not to mention an already boring narrative. I wouldn't recommend this book but of course it is my personal opinion. I had to force myself to finish this book.
Sep 10, 2012 Lourdes rated it liked it
This may not be a book for everyone. But I would say that the story seems real. The parts do read as short stories where you could see the different stages of his life. Compelling enough that I wanted to read it all the way through though.
Gauri Parab
This book too, seems autobiographical like A STRANGER TO HISTORY. But it wasn't as gripping or dramatic as expected. I felt quite disconnected from the story though there was so much material, so many topics and diverse characters to tackle.
I thought I liked this book, the story was quite intriguing and interesting - the quest for the father - but I realise a few months later I have almost forgotten everything from this book. Not a good sign.
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Aatish Taseer has worked as a reporter for Time Magazine and has written for the Sunday Times, the Sunday Telegraph, the Financial Times, Prospect, TAR Magazine and Esquire. He is the author of Stranger to History: a Son's Journey through Islamic Lands (2009) and a highly acclaimed translation Manto: Selected Stories (2008). His novel, The Temple-Goers (2010) was shortlisted for the 2010 Costa Fir ...more
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