Shadab Zeest Hashmi

Shadab Zeest Hashmi



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Winner of the Sable Books Hybrid Book Competition

Comb is the story of a girl “under the spell of history,” growing up in the shadow of the legendary Khyber Pass which is both a bridge between disparate civilizations and an impassable divide. Shadab Zeest Hashmi reveals the tangles of empire and language, history and myth, exile and belonging — from the lens of childhood, integrating memory with the history of one of the most significant geopolitical and cultural thresholds of the world. This is a book that honors thresholds in a time of closed doors, written with a poet’s conviction in the regency of love.

Sable Press, 2019

“I thoroughly enjoyed Comb. Shadab Zeest Hashmi is a magnificent writer.”

Bapsi Sidhwa, author of Ice-Candy Man

“…it is in fact a stunning book of motherhood, a story Zeest Hashmi tells to her children about our world, our ravaged, beautiful, helpless, inspiring world.”

Ilya Kaminsky, author of Deaf Republic and Dancing in Odessa

Comb weaves together vignette, fragment, poetry, and lyric essay to create a unique and visceral memoir of growing up in Peshawar…”

Julia Bouwsma, author of Midden and Work by Bloodlight

“…acutely tender and immersive. Zeest Hashmi’s painterly descriptions of landscapes, cities, family members, and literary characters, limn time’s immutability and create a multistoried memoir of extraordinary depth and beauty…”

Deema K. Shehabi, author of Nineteen Departures from the Moon



Sable Press


125 Pages