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written by Abu B. Rafique

Although both time and origin separate them, this story is of lives that fate and circumstance have tied to Pakistan. Aasiya slips away from watchful eyes to meet her lover at a teashop in the same city her grandparents, Suraiya and Iqbal, once moved to after meeting amid the bloodshed of the Partition. The owner of the teashop, Salim, also finds himself refuge from Afghanistan’s war in the heat of Karachi. Meanwhile, a family nearby deals with the consequences of their son eagerly leaving the city and bearing firsthand witness to the horrors of the seemingly holy war.

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Meet the Author

Abu B. Rafique was born in Los Angeles, California in 1995. His family moved to the Northern Virginia area when he was four years old and they have been there ever since. At a young age, Rafique had a passion for reading and storytelling, although it wasn’t something he considered as a serious pursuit until he got to high school. After graduating from Lake Braddock Secondary School, he enrolled in college but left after three semesters to pursue a career as a writer. At age twenty, he self-published his first collection of short stories. His short stories have been published in India, and his poetry is published in a number of Middle Eastern literary prints. 

Press Kit


Formats: Hardcover, Paperback, E-book

Pages:  272

ISBN HC: 978-1-958754-20-7

ISBN PB: 978-1-953021-02-1

ISBN EB: 978-1-953021-03-8

Release Date: 1/4/2022


“Of Memories and Mirages is a masterful exploration into the themes of identity, diaspora, migration, love, and war through the intimate stories of a rich array of characters navigating their place in a world that was not of their choosing. The reader is given a glimpse into the travails of South Asian Muslim students in a post-9/11 America before being transported back in time to the Partition of the subcontinent, and then forward in time to the effects of America’s ongoing war in Afghanistan, bearing witness every step of the way. Each one of these enormous historic events is refracted through the ordinary lives of the book’s protagonists, who prove to be more than just the sum of their experiences and emerge in their full vividness as agents of their own stories. A wonderful and captivating read.”

—Asad Dandia, Brooklyn-born Pakistani-American writer and organizer

“Though deceptively straightforward, Of Memories and Mirages is a masterful display of the intricacies in the vocabulary of love. Throughout—while the stories are separated by time, mood, and forms of love—Rafique is devastatingly delicate, yet painfully precise. Before you know it, you ache with the characters as the tragedy of the human condition artfully makes itself known. It sneaks up on you, tender tendrils gripping your heart from behind. A wonderful read for all connoisseurs of love and loss out there.”

—Elia Rathore, writer and journalist

“Of Memories and Mirages is Abu B. Rafique’s finest work. In this novel comprised of letters, recollections, and lush, descriptive writing, characters grapple with love, loss, grief, hope, and uncertainty. Events that are writ large on the world stage are brought into sharp relief through their impact on this close-knit Karachi neighborhood. Rafique deftly draws a straight line from war to romantic relationships, playground bullies, and family recipes. Each vignette is painted over with love and romanticism, such that even the most gruesome accounts are underscored by an empathy that is rarely afforded to characters such as these.”

—Tori Mumtaz, visual artist and writer

“A beautiful amalgamation of stories and characters, interwoven yet indi- vidual at the same time. Moving, cinematic, and deeply philosophical, this is a treasure I cherished wholeheartedly. The stories are etched in my soul and I am still feeling the pain and grief that Rafique has evoked through his poignant words. An important and magnificent novel, and a must-read for all.”

—Rekha Bhardwaj, singer and seeker

“Abu Rafique writes with honesty, precision, and compassion. He understands the frailties and strengths inside the hearts and minds of his char- acters and writes with great awareness and empathy toward the human condition.”

—Michael Imperioli, author of The Perfume Burned His Eyes

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