94 pages 3 hours read

Sabaa Tahir

All My Rage

Fiction | Novel | YA | Published in 2022

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Important Quotes

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“I was six when an earthquake hit my village in Pakistan. Chachu drove for two days from Karachi because the flights to northern Punjab were down. When he reached the village, he crawled over the rubble to my grandparents’ house, where my parents lived, too. He tore at the rocks with his bare hands. The emergency workers told him it was useless. His palms bled. His nails were ripped out. Everyone was dead. But Chachu kept digging. He heard me crying, trapped in a closet. He pulled me out. Got me to a hospital and didn’t leave my side. Chachu brought me to America, where he’d been in college. Left his engineering internship at the military base and put a down payment on a failing liquor store with the little cash he’s saved up. And that’s where he’s stayed for the past eleven years, just so we could afford to live.”

(Part 1, Chapter 3, Page 17)

This account of Chachu rescuing Noor—repeated multiple times throughout the narrative—reveals Noor’s thoughts as Chachu physically abuses her and shows that Noor feels she owes Chachu for the sacrifices he made for her. However, Tahir only reveals the abuse late in the novel, causing the reader to reflect on the other times when this description was given and realize that Noor was also being abused in those moments. 

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“‘Your fiancé is a restless soul.’ She stroked the lines on my hands and poked at the calluses. ‘You will travel across the sea.’ ‘My fiancé is the only son. He will not desert his parents.’ ‘Nonetheless, you will leave Pakistan,’ she said. ‘You will have your children far from here. Three.’ ‘Three!’ ‘A boy. A girl. And a third that is not she, nor he, nor of the third gender. You will fail them all.’”

(Part 1, Chapter 4, Page 25)

The fortune teller’s prediction to Misbah foreshadows future events. Even though Tahir reveals the present and past in tandem, she manages to gradually reveal how the fortune teller’s prediction comes true. Misbah and Toufiq leave Pakistan after the death of Toufiq’s parents, and Misbah has one biological child—Salahudin. The other children referred to in the prophecy are Noor, who is like a daughter to Misbah, and the motel, which she loves like a third child. 

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“If we are lost, God is like water, finding the unknowable path when we cannot.”

(Part 1, Chapter 7, Page 42)

Misbah imparts these words to Noor shortly before her death, and they echo in Noor’s mind often throughout the novel. Despite her pain and rage, Noor thinks of Ama’s words in moments of hope, like when she receives an A on her poetry essay. She also repeats the words to Salahudin in the courtroom directly after he gives the honest testimony that clears Noor of all charges.