A Choice of Fate by Hassaan Usmani

I had an opportunity to read an ARC of this book sent to me by the author in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

The tale of an angel and the un-fated soul it has been tasked with guiding through the unique opportunity of choosing its own Fate.

A Short Philosophical Read – 
This parable style story had me searching for hidden meaning throughout – trying to understand the author’s truths as shared through these angel and soul characters.

The author’s debut novel – it offered a deliberate philosophical discussion on the nature of Choice, Wishing, Wishes, Infinite Possibilities and the Human Condition developed through the device of a sometimes strikingly on point, sometimes deftly absurd and wholly and decidedly unique and unusual tale.

Spoilers ahead (click on >Details to reveal)

    The almost absurdity of the interactions and Zilm’s (the angel) character; which not only bordered but made deep forays into the absurd, had me asking “What the heck am I reading?!!” “What is happening here?!!”

    In the beginning, at points (frequent points!) I found myself wondering – is this angel mental (crazy/bonkers/a nutcase) and just monologuing to his own shadow? But then there would be  cues that would have me returning once again to the soul/angel almost dialogue interaction.

    At one point I wanted to facepalm at the sheer ridiculousness as Zilm tried to impart the meaning of gender to the soul.

    I was almost at the ends of my patience waiting for Zilm to realise the silhouette couldn’t speak. I found myself thinking, “Really Zilm? Really!?”

    Then Zilm enlists the aid of a grouchy fellow angel, Zurun and you see their angelic innocence juxtaposed with their angelic knowledge giving rise to moments of wisdom.

    One interaction particularly spoke to me:

    Zilm: “The silhouette is literally being asked to make all its life choices at a time when it knows nothing”
    Zunur: “What’s the point of making them after living a life one did not even choose?”
    Zilm: “At least it’ll know something then!”
    Zunur: “Actually no! At that point all it will desire will be things that it never got and always coveted. If it leads the life of a poor man, it’ll want to be rich. If it lives the life of a rich person, it’ll want to lead a simple life.”

    I found it interesting how it touched on these aspects of life as we know it: 
    That we have so many early life choices that end up governing our lives- choices made in our 20s and 30s that we live with for the next 40 – 60 odd yrs. And
    The grass always seems greener mentality cliche. Comparing ourselves, Wishing for different things. Wishing…

    The finale of the angel and the soul’s interaction still felt unresolved, almost as if it ended where it began in a circular fashion but achieved by circuitous ways –

    Was this the author’s intention? 
    Was it their commentary on the  circular nature of life and it’s lack of deliberate endings?

The tale has left me –
Still thoughtful… 
Still searching… 
Still wondering…

And like any good parable should –
Still questioning… What Makes Us Who We Are?

The book is available for purchase on 



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