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The Lost Pearl

4.3 of 5 stars 4.30  ·  rating details  ·  57 ratings  ·  29 reviews
Everything changes for nine-year-old Sana Shah as she witnesses the horror of her father's assassination. she suffers through the pain of losing him, and realizing the worth of lessons learnt from him as Pearls of Wisdom. The tragedy forces Sana to leave her home in Pakistan, and traverse the globe to California. As time passes, she remains tormented by her memories as she ...more
Paperback, 178 pages
Published July 29th 2012 by Lara Zuberi
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(showing 1-30 of 282)
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Misha Husnain Ali
So far, the prose is aggressively bland. It's as if someone went through the whole thing and stripped it bare of any accidentally interesting images or similes.

The characters are one-note. Ask me in two hours to describe anything about the family introduced to us and I wouldn't be able to do better than male, female, child one, child two.

When reading books written by bilingual authors, I have often remarked upon how much more interesting it is when the smattering of local phrases is explained. T
Ayesha Usman
My my.. I don't even have words to express how much i loved every page every single word of the book. Lara, to compare you with anyone would not do justice but i can safely say that you are without a shadow of doubt amongst the likes of Paulo Cohelo and Khalid Hosseini ,(two of my favourite authors from modern times). You have stolen my heart and have done justice to
every word and every emotion and many thoughts that were welling up inside me since my own father's assassination, they now have t
This is a wonderful story about a young Pakistani girl, Sana, whose happy childhood is abruptly brought to an end by a horrible tragedy. The story follows her as she grows into a young woman. She and her family are forever changed by the event, and the author does a wonderful job of showing how Sana struggles to deal her anger and grief, and eventually finds happiness again.

The descriptions of Sana's childhood, and her experiences in Pakistan and in the U.S. are beautifully written, from the foo
Yusra Gulab Jamman
The Lost Pearl is narrated in first person by Sana - the protagonist who witnesses her father's murder as a young child. The story charts her progression from childhood to adulthood, and climaxes in a meeting with her father's killer.


DESCRIPTIVE: Karachi is a city which holds many fond memories for me, and I was excited to re-visit this familiar locale by losing myself in The Lost Pearl. Sana (the protagonist) enjoys a privileged, sheltered background as a child, so her descriptions of Kar
For far too many times the chemists tried to turn different elements into gold but never did it happen.
Give this task to a writer and the writer will turn the words into gold...

Sometimes a reader is so lost in thoughts,thoughts not of the reader but of the writer that soon these thoughts become reader's own. Unfolding history, solving a mystery and providing a story of silvery Lara Zuberi writes with finesse. Her words were like an Ocean; they were flowing in a melody, touched like a whole new w
Christoph Fischer
"The Lost Pearl" by Lara Zuberi was a precious find for me, a rare 'pearl' if you forgive the pun.
The book tells about a girl's love for her father, his assassination in their native Pakistan not long after its independence and the consequences of this tragedy for her life. The mother re-marries and the girl, Sana, moves to California to her aunt in protest of the marriage.
Told in beautiful prose and with melancholic sadness we live through Sana's experience as an immigrant, student and a young
Shahida Bashir
The Lost Pearl is such a gripping read; I could just not put the book down, and finished it within a few hours. The story spans across the continents, and amazingly captures the indigenous flavors of both settings (US and Pakistan). The geopolitical, social and cultural backdrop transposes one into the novel. What I enjoyed the most was the lyrical prose, the smattering of authentic poetic references, (esp, to the famous South Asian poet Faiz), within the narrative, which make it a true literary ...more
This is a wonderful story about a young Pakistani girl, Sana, whose happy childhood is abruptly brought to an end by a horrible tragedy. The story follows her as she grows into a young woman. She and her family are forever changed by the event, and the author does a wonderful job of showing how Sana struggles to deal her anger and grief, and eventually finds happiness again.

The descriptions of Sana's childhood, and her experiences in Pakistan and in the U.S. are beautifully written, from the foo
it was a very well written book with an amazing theme. i loved the fact that the writer tried to add the historical touch to the actual theme of the book. honestly the blend was rather interesting and refreshing to read.

the characters were realistic and it suited well with the familiar pakistani was a heart warming book and i really enjoyed reading it.
Naeema Haider
Could not put the book down because how easy it flowed from one situation to the next. Being a Pakistani, I could relate to so many situations as well as emotions of that culture.
Connie Harkness
A beautiful story, nicely written. Thanks for letting me now about it, Lara.
Working on the next one?
This is perhaps one of the most heartfelt books I have ever read.It had me near tears most of the time.Sana was nine year old when she witnessed the murder of her father.Such an event is enough totraumatizeeven an adult .She was a great character and instead of just giving up,she sought to find peace and justice for what happened to her father. I can't even begin to imagine what I would have done in her place.A thing that I really liked about this book was the very good description of Pakistan a ...more
Stephanie Wolf
Who could ever imagine that one event could have such an impact on so many things during the course of your life?

Nine year old Sana lived with her family in Pakistan. They were a happy family living the perfect life. One night, before Sana’s eyes, someone killed her father. Her father, a loving man who would always pass along “pearls of wisdom,” was loved by everyone.

Within one year, Sana’s mother remarried to a man Sana could not accept as her father. Sana, even though still a child, moved to C
They lost Pearl takes one on journey through times not too long ago in one girls transition to womanhood with a secret, an emotional childhood, and a fear that has followed her through adulthood.

Zuberi, brings such a wonderful masterpiece in the sense of words that tell a very captivating story. I have never read anything fiction/novel regarding Pakistan and the struggle of that country. It was quite an eye-opening experience with a great story-line.

The author has a very good choice of words d
Elizabeth (Stuffed Shelves)
Sana Shah is only nine-years-old when she is a bystander to her father's horrible assassination. This tragedy forces Sana to escape Pakistan and her mother's new husband and move to California with her Aunt and Uncle. Even though she has changed her scenery and lives with family who treats her as her own, she is still haunted from her memories as she struggles to deal with losing her father, and rediscover herself in a new country.

Lara Zuberi goes into great detail about Sana's physical and men
Kathleen Schmitt

Like most serious novels The Last Pearl deals with issues of justice, in this case when nine-year-old Sana sees the face of the man who kills her father. From that point she embarks on an an intense interior journey to find a reality that makes some sense to her. While she seeks healing, happiness, and perhaps even peace, her anger drives her to find truth and justice about what was done to her father and her family. This kind of search can become complicated in a country like Pakistan where cor
Shaheen Ashraf-Ahmed
The Lost Pearl was an engaging read and an excellent debut novel. A story about anger, revenge and forgiveness moves between Pakistan and America and is a story told by Sana, the narrator, who has witnessed her father's murder and forgets his last piece of advice, which is to always uncover the truth, an oversight that causes a lot of suffering to herself and the other characters of The Lost Pearl. It was interesting that Zuberi featured the terrorism of 9/11 in the backdrop to widen the theme o ...more
Xunaira J.
We all understand what emotions, feelings and tragedies could do to us but little do we understand until we are subjected to them. Others can feel your pain only when they have gone through it themselves and therein, lays the experience. In this tale of tragedy, trauma and politically changing world, Lara Zuberi has beautifully created a tale of a young girl Sana who fights the world alone for the love of her assassinated father. Looking closely at Sana’s character, it made me feel like I was lo ...more
Jean Moore
The Lost Pearl is a story about how our faith sustains us and our choices simultaneously shape into who we are and haunt us with doubts about ‘the road not taken.’

Lara Zuberi, through the use of the first person descriptive narrative, introduces us to Sana, a young girl who, at the age of nine, experiences the most disturbing and also the most defining event of her life.

Singularly determined to remember her father as her immediate family needs to forget, she leaves her home in Karachi Pakistan a
When this book was suggested to me, I was extremely hesitant to start it. My experience with Pakistani writers was not good and I blame the lack of reading habit in Pakistan for it; low reading habit less mature writers... I dragged on with this for months and one day I decided that it's time now... On completion of first four chapters, I was sorry that I dragged this book... The writer has sketched such an impressive scenario and details are so vivid that empathy develops unintentionally... Cha ...more
3.5 stars. I enjoyed the first half, but once Sana was in college and had met Ahmer, the book just became awkward. In particular, the dialogue didn't read naturally. There were also a few too many coincidences in the story.
That said, the story was often beautiful, particularly when the author disposed of dialogue and let Sana's voice and emotions come through.
This being a début novel, I kept my expectations low.
However, once I started reading, I couldn't put it down. The plot is fast-paced and interesting. We get a good sense of time as Lara's wonderfully merged her story with real-life events, making it seem all the more real. We see how the character develops, events that affect and form her and why she acts and thinks the way she does. The writing is strong and flawless; doesn't bore us with trivial details/stuff.

The novel also accurately and be
Nida Siddiqui
The book is so poignant and as a Pakistani, I can certainly relate to the various political/economic struggles that make the backdrop of this book. The character develops into a strong young, educated woman who finds love in an unlikely place. The way the beautiful relationship between the main character and her love interest is described makes you root for them to finally figure it all out in the end. The twists in the tale make this a page turner. Its a great read for anyone, but especially re ...more
Faiza Saadaat
As a Pakistani, needless to say it was easy to relate to the back drop of the novel, however what particularly captured my heart and mind were the emotional bonds, morals and values which I found to be the essence of the entire story. The love and respect that Sana's character highlights for every relationship despite every situation she faces and above all the principles and values which are depicted are priceless especially in the current times! The style of writing is very captivating and yet ...more
I won this book through Goodreads. The Lost Pearl is a truly engaging story that tells how a nine year girls life in Afghanistan dramatically changes with the murder of her father and how at the end all the pieces of her life come together in a unexpected way. It was a pleasure to read and I am glad I had the opportunity through Goodreads and the author.
I won it through the Goodreads giveaway. I enjoy reading about women in other cultures than my own and seeing what their lives are like, especially if they are coming of age stories. This is one with a tragic past, culture shock, family, love, and politics - a little bit of everything can't be bad.
Muzna Shamsi
This novel is a must read. The story is very gripping and words flow like a stream. Amazing !! I had a hard time to put in down .. finished it in a day !! The author really did an awesome job here !! Highly recommended!!
Xubayr Mayo
Interesting book with a very good flow of words, the emotions put into the words were very strong. Enjoyed the whole read.

Good work Lara Zuberi.
Thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. Very well written and kept me glued to it till the very end. A must read!
Fatima marked it as to-read
Aug 30, 2015
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Pakistani Readers: The lost pearl 102 100 Apr 22, 2014 12:33PM  
Pakistani Readers: The Lost Pearl 13 29 Jul 28, 2013 05:56PM  
Making Connections: 929. - THE LOST PEARL by Lara Zuberi 20 64 Apr 28, 2013 08:17AM  
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Lara Zuberi is of Pakistani origin. She writes literary fiction which has a multicultural flavor. She is an oncologist by profession, and is donating 50% of the proceeds from her debut novel, The Lost Pearl, to underprivileged cancer patients. She is currently working on her second novel, while trying to balance her diverse roles as mother of a three-year-old, physician and author.
More about Lara Zuberi...

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