A Washington Post, Rocky Mountain News, Boston Globe Best Book of the Year
Intrigue and subterfuge combine with bad luck and good in this darkly comic debut about love, betrayal, tyranny, family, and a conspiracy trying its damnedest to happen.
Ali Shigri, Pakistan Air Force pilot and Silent Drill Commander of the Fury Squadron, is on a mission to avenge his father's suspicious death, which the government calls a suicide.Ali's target is none other than General Zia ul-Haq, dictator of Pakistani. Enlisting a rag-tag group of conspirators, including his cologne-bathed roommate, a hash-smoking American lieutenant, and a mango-besotted crow, Ali sets his elaborate plan in motion. There's only one problem: the line of would-be Zia assassins is longer than he could have possibly known.
One of the funniest passages in Mohammed Hanif's acidly satirical novel, A Case of Exploding Mangoes, is the official statement of a Pakistani cadet facing interrogation by his superiors. "When I asked whether I was under detention [the guard] laughed and made a joke about the cell mattress having too many holes. The joke cannot be reproduced in this report. 2nd OIC arrived half an hour later and informed me that I was under close arrest... if I didn't tell him the truth he'd hand me over to Inter Services Intelligence and they would hang me by my testicles 2nd OIC made a joke about two marines and a bar of soap in a Fort Bragg bathroom. I didn't think I was supposed to laugh and I didn't."