Odyssey of Self defines the struggles of an ordinary man to come to terms with extraordinary circumstances in order to discover the exact nature of his identity. Though the characters are fictitious, the land, with its convoluted internal struggle as well as its abysmal darkness of ignorance, corruption, illiteracy, and its defiance and obstinacy to come to terms with this malevolence is very much real. The story is about Abdullah, who seeks to interpret his identity both as a man and as a Muslim in a pure land that, sorrowfully, has not acted as purely as it proclaims.
Odyssey of Self is not only a social reformist novel but also a seething satire on modern Pakistani society. It is the story of a traveler who begins his journey without a destination in mind. A traveler who hitches a ride on any caravan that is headed anywhere. It is only at the end of the journey that he realizes that it was the wrong caravan and the wrong destination. All of the people whom he yearns would join him do not share his passions nor his visions to make the land as pure as it could—and should—be.
Odyssey of Self is full of characters that litter the streets, the educational institutions, the religious centers, the bureaucracy, and the decision-making powerhouses of Pakistan. If you have been there, you have probably met dozens of such characters. If you are not familiar with Pakistan, come and understand the “purity” of the country through the eyes of Abdullah, who struggles not only to find his self in this maze of a society but continues to hope that light will eventually shine on this corner of the world, too.
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