Wednesday 4 August 2021

#BlogTour No Honour by Awais Khan

 It's my turn on the BlogTour No Honour by Awais Khan. 

'A powerful, poignant and captivating story of love, family, and a battle for change, which travels from the depths of rural Pakistan, to the dangerous streets of overpopulated Lahore'

About the Author

Awais Khan is a graduate of the University of Western Ontario and Durham University, and studied creative writing with Faber Academy. His debut novel, In the Company of Strangers, was published to much critical acclaim, and he now regularly appears on TV and radio. Awais also teaches a popular online creative writing course to aspiring writers around the world. He lives in Lahore and is currently working on his third novel. Follow @AwaisKhanAuthor on Twitter.

About the book

In sixteen-year-old Abida’s small Pakistani village, there are age-old rules to live by, and her family’s honour to protect. And, yet, her spirit is defiant and she yearns to make a home with the man she loves.

When the unthinkable happens, Abida faces the same fate as other young girls who have chosen unacceptable alliances – certain, public death. Fired by a fierce determination to resist everything she knows to be wrong about the society into which she was born, and aided by her devoted father, Jamil, who puts his own life on the line to help her, she escapes to Lahore – only to disappear.

Jamil goes to Lahore in search of Abida – a city where the prejudices that dominate their village take on a new and horrifying form – and father and daughter are caught in a world from which they may never escape.


The honour killing of a young girl in her village seems so far from relevant to Abida. She is a teenager in love with no sense of impending danger for herself or her family when the inevitable happens and the truth of her situation becomes common knowledge. The wrath of the men who see themselves as judge and jury, but only when it comes to opposite gender, and how they can keep them submissive.

One of the interesting themes in this story was the topic of violence against women and how it is perceived as a tool to keep them obedient. Jamil has been taught not to treat the women in his life this way, however as the story progresses the use of violence and the treatment of his wife and daughter are part of a self-fulfilling prophecy - until he has to make a choice between life or death.

There is no doubt this is a powerful story and behind the fictional characters there is a hard truth that needs to be heard, indeed it needs to travel around the world. The oppression of women by certain cultures, societies, countries and religions is relevant topic of our day and age. It's unacceptable and deplorable that girls and women are still living in the dark ages, being controlled by archaic rules made by and for men.

Honour killings are also part of Western crime statistics. Too many young girls and women are being murdered by their own family members for imagined infractions on the 'honour' of their family. There is no place for vigilante enforcement of medieval rules in the 21st century. There should be zero tolerance for any person involved in said crimes.

The power these cruel perpetrators wield over families and communities is cult-like and anyone who orders the rape, torture and murder of a child, girl or woman in the name of simple human mistakes or choices - is a murderer and someone who shouldn't be held in high esteem.

Although I really enjoyed the story, part of me would have liked to have seen Khan take the brutal honesty of the first chapter and run with it - with less of a fictional element. Some things shouldn't be sugarcoated to save the sensibilities of the privileged. Great read.

Buy No Honour at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Orenda Books; Pub date 19 August 2021 | Paperback Original | £8.99. Buy at Orenda Books.

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