Our Lady of Alice Bhatti

By Mohammed Hanif

Nursing, hospitals, violence, discrimination

Fiction

Published by Vintage

Shortlist 2012
Our Lady of Alice Bhatti

A darkly comic tale of life in Karachi for an ex-convict, Christian nurse and her Muslim boy friend.

Alice Bhatti is just out of prison and looking for a job. The ‘Sacred Heart Hospital for All Ailments’ is looking for a medical phenomenon!

Alice is only a junior nurse but, with some instruction from a nurse’s manual, skills she picked up in gaol and an uncanny healing ability, she lands the job.

Alice soon discovers that her life in the overcrowded, haphazard hospital is far from easy.But, when she falls for the lovable and optimistic Teddy Butt things get a lot worse.

By day, Teddy is a bodybuilder; at night he works for a violent and corrupt branch of the police.

Will Alice and Teddy’s struggle together see them finally living happily ever after? Or, will the trials they face tear them apart and bring them both down?

In this often dark, often humorous tale, Hanif describes the issues of health, violence and discrimination which confront his country today.