Aunty Pussy, butterflies and social shenanigans

Published: February 4, 2011

The hilarious follow up to "Diary of a social butterfly"

Don’t get the wrong idea. Aunty Pussy is just the title character in Tender Hooks, a book I just read – and what a crazy read it has been.

This little paperback is a piece of work that’s sure to be misunderstood on many levels. I’m not what you call a hardcore reader (I manage to consume one or two titles a month) but this is surely the finest example of “don’t judge a book by its cover” on my bookshelf. At first glance, one co-worker described it as a Pakistani erotica. Another thought it to be an attempt to “undermine Pakistani culture”. A third friend thought it was a romance novel.

I didn’t know what to expect but had mentally prepared myself for chick-lit. What I found instead was something rather surprising.

The book is a follow up to Moni Mohsin’s Diary of a Social Butterfly. This time Butterfly is out on the prowl for Aunty Pussy’s future daughter-in-law. In between the funny first person narrative, author Mohsin manages to slip in razor sharp shards of satire striking at Pakistani high society.

The narrator’s character is an archetypal Lahori socialite who knows more than she comprehends. Her attempts at appearing cultured and ahead of the times unravels as a wonderfully crafted critique of the aspirational  Pakistani nouveau riche.

The story is full of hilarious intentional misspellings that mirror the misunderstandings that come forth in the classic ‘monkey see monkey do’ scenario. Time and time again, I had to stop myself from laughing out loud at this strangely funny book.

However, the humor was bittersweet, as I realised that the book was an exaggerated portrayal of an actual community.

With the flip of every page, the novel maintains the delicate balance between the expectations and aspirations of the ‘elite’ in Pakistan and manages to amuse even the harshest of sceptics (in this case- me).

In between kitty parties, Taliban bomb scares, lavish wedding receptions and scenes straight from a Star Plus drama was the interconnected social world of Lahore. I’ve never read anything funnier (or scarier) from a local author.

This post was originally published here.

umair.kazi

Umair Kazi

A strategist who blogs at www.theideaartist.com

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • http://grsalam.wordpress.com Ghausia

    I’m sorry I just couldn’t get past the title of this blog. Auntie Pussy, heh. I’m getting this book just for that.Recommend

  • http://www.bonfriends.org Marina Khan

    Useless blog it is. Senseless. You think it is funny that naming aunty pussy will get you readers and admire your work. shame on you.Recommend

  • Uncle D

    dude! I loved this book…. its smart and funny and so much better than the first one. Recommend

  • Tina

    I love Moni Mohsin. She is hilarious and I think that the way she has named her characters is extremely interesting. The “janis” and social climbers are a perfect portrayal of the highlife in urban Pakistan.
    Loved the column, loved the firs book and can’t wait to read the third! Fab Fab Fab!Recommend

  • Waqqas Iftikhar

    rather unfortuntate name that…..reminds me of pussy galore from the bond movie….Recommend

  • http://bakedsunshine.wordpress.com/ Shumaila

    oh I SO want to get my hands on this book. I absolutely loved Diary of a Social Butterfly, it was hilarious, it had me in stitches from page one :D. I’m glad you reviewed this one, I can’t wait to read it now!Recommend

  • http://howtozed.blogspot.com zahid

    Bhai Title is very dangerous, otherwise post is good.Recommend

  • http://habloid.wordpress.com Habiba Younis

    Sounds hilarious! Will make sure to try it out!Recommend

  • http://mysticsmuses.wordpress.com Le Mystique

    @Marina: Thanks for being so judgmental, harsh and WRONG.
    PS: Please don’t come back again because you waste your time and readers time, and the later one is surely precious. Recommend

  • Saad Durrani

    Is this here now? My vocabulary will never be the same.Recommend

  • parvez

    Seems like a lot of this stuff is presently in the book stores. Right now am reading something similar called Beautiful – from this Angle by Maha Khan Phillips. Pretty good.Recommend

  • karim akbar

    Brother! I think the word “aunty pussy” does not suit our society. We must take care during using these words. ThanksRecommend

  • qirat

    by reading your this…em dying to read this..!!!
    i hope i can enjoy it as u..!! :)Recommend

  • Saad Durrani

    Where is it available???Recommend

  • http://www.pakspectatogooutr.com Sana Saleem

    The book is lovable. I have read it !Recommend

  • http://www.pakspectator.com Sana Saleem

    The book is lovable. I have read it ! Hmmm But the title is not good …Recommend

  • http://www.flickr.com/ameerhamza Ameer Hamza

    This is a nice post with appropriate title. Aunty pussies are everywhere and everybody, it seems, wants to climb the ladder no matter what. I will certainly read this book. Recommend

  • Devil

    Pussy cat is a breed of cats, so all those cursing the title of the book, believing it to be what you watch secretly in the dark alleys of internet…. GET YOUR ACT TOGETHER AND CLEAN UP YOUR THOUGHTS LOOSERS!!!!Recommend

  • http://saidcanblog.blogspot.com unseen-eccentric

    hahaha…sounds like a must-read, thanks for reviewing it. will definitely have to add this to my “must-read list”
    cheers.Recommend

  • http://raheelaijaz.blogspot.com/ Let us not digress

    Sounds interesting. I’ve been trying to get hands on some books along the satirical lines of catch 22, animal farm, etc. This one appears to be the one.Recommend

  • Arsalan Faruqi

    the title has infact a subliminal message in itself. what the devil has pointed out rightly can be interpreted in many ways. so, YES both comprehensions are valid for such a piece of sattire :)Recommend

  • http://nil M. Shakeel

    @parvez: Recommend

  • An observer

    @Marina Khan:

    well said..!!!Recommend