Noon A Novel

Aatish Taseer

Faber & Faber



Trade Paperback

304 Pages



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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 is drawn into events he barely understands. His half brother, Isffy, is being blackmailed; his powerful father’s entourage is tearing itself apart; and the city of Port Bin Qasim, where he finds himself, is filled with rioting protestors. Moral danger lurks in every corner of this dark, shifting, and unfamiliar world.

Set against the background of a turbulent Pakistan and a rapidly changing India, Noon is a startling and powerfully charged novel from a brilliant young writer. Aatish Taseer bears witness to some of the most urgent questions of our times, questions about nationhood and violence, family and identity.


Praise for Noon

“Combining a heady cocktail of theft, blackmail and dysfunctional family relations with a touch of the Kafkaesque, this is a powerfully written and deeply thoughtful work.” —Anna Scott, The Guardian

A meditative, occasionally jolting novel by Aatish Taseer, the 31-year-old son of the former governor of Punjab, Salman Taseer . . . [A] blackmail plotline provides the novel with its brutal climax—and deepens the perception that Pakistan is both decadent and abnegating, irrevocably Westernized and violently closed off. The novel’s smart coda . . . does nothing to reconcile or rationalize these contradictions. No sense trying to do so, seems to be the message of this intelligent, unsettling novel—a theme only a fiction writer could express in such a satisfactory way. —Taylor Antrim, The Daily Beast

"At a time when realism's triumph has turned many novelists into faithful chroniclers of their time, Noon announces itself as a work of literature . . . A compelling tale of a man on a journey to fathom the world that has made him, and perhaps write his way free . . . Beautiful and poised."—John Freeman, Toronto Star

"Noon is an unembellished account of the compromises demanded by several conflicting identities . . . [Taseer] is an engrossing and gifted writer. Pakistan (or any other country) needs the subtle view of its best novelists and writers more than ever."—Olivia Cole, British GQ

“Naipaul’s praise is rare enough to be notable; and Taseer lives up to it . . . Among the sharpest and best-written fictions about . . . contemporary India.” The Independent

“[A] tangle of politics, murder, bribery and betrayal . . . Gripping.” The Observer

Noon’s careful yet nimble prose captures the visceral quality of this world in decline through a keenly critical and coldly detached lens . . . Moral corruption, greed, and violence are not glamorized or sensationalized; they are recursive facts of life, eternally returning as Nietzsche would’ve guessed, and modern day Pakistan is not immune . . . It pops with the verve of a great detective story, filled with suspense and scandal, but also empathy and even meta-fiction.” —Stephen Spencer, Electric Literature

Reviews from Goodreads



Read an Excerpt

NOON (Chapter 1)Last Rites


'We passionately long for there to be another life in which we shall be similar to what we are here below. But we do not pause to reflect that, even without waiting for that other life, in this life, after a few years, we are unfaithful to what we once were, to what we wished to remain immortally.'

Remembrance of Things Past, Marcel Proust

The dressing table was the first thing she had bought herself since Sahil. It had attracted her, with its tiny bulbs, gilt and mirrors, from the pages of a foreign magazine. She decided at length to take the

Read the full excerpt


  • Aatish Taseer

  • Aatish Taseer was born in 1980. He has worked as a reporter for Time magazine and has written for The Sunday Times (London), the Financial Times, Prospect, TAR, and Esquire. He is the author of Stranger to History: A Son’s Journey Through Islamic Lands and is the highly acclaimed translator of Manto: Selected Stories. His novel The Temple-Goers was shortlisted for the 2010 Costa First Novel Award. He lives in Delhi and London.
  • Aatish Taseer