Karachi: /DNA/ – A book talk on Divided Species was recently held in Karachi. Muhammad Omar Iftikhar, author of the novel was in conversation with Dr. Qazi Tauseef, CEO Khud Muhafiz and Lifelong Learning Lab. Divided Species is a science fiction novel set in Karachi – perhaps the first novel of its kind.

During the conversation, Omar shared the contextual analysis of the novel and its relevance with the readers – especially to the Karachiites. He discussed the characterization and the storytelling process of this novel and how he came up with a science fiction story. The discussion explored the reason for the dearth of science fiction writers in Pakistan and how schools can instill creativity and imagination among children.

When asked why Omar did not set the story in any other city, he said that he wanted to be honest with the narration. Since he has been living in Karachi since birth, he could describe the sights and sounds of Karachi with certainty. The novel was published in November 2020 and has been reviewed by various print and digital publications of Pakistan.