SHORTLISTED FOR THE BOOKER PRIZE
An award-winning, thrillingly provocative international bestseller - adapted to a major motion picture starring Riz Ahmed and Kiefer Sutherland - from the author of Exit West
'Excuse me, sir, but may I be of assistance? Ah, I see I have alarmed you. Do not be frightened by my beard. I am a lover of America . . . '
So speaks the mysterious stranger at a Lahore cafe as dusk settles. Invited to join him for tea, you learn his name and what led this speaker of immaculate English to seek you out. For he is more worldly than you might expect; better travelled and better educated. He knows the West better than you do. And as he tells you his story, of how he embraced the Western dream -- and a Western woman -- and how both betrayed him, so the night darkens. Then the true reason for your meeting becomes abundantly clear . . .
Challenging, mysterious and thrillingly tense, Mohsin Hamid's masterly The Reluctant Fundamentalist is a vital read teeming with questions and ideas about some of the most pressing issues of today's globalised, fractured world.
PRAISE FOR THE RELUCTANT FUNDAMENTALIST:
'Beautifully written . . . more exciting than any thriller I've read for a long time' Philip Pullman
'Admirably spare and amazingly exciting' Rachel Cooke, New Statesman
'Sharp, relevant, impressively intelligent . . . entertains at the same time as it makes you think' Daily Telegraph
'A cleverly constructed fable of infatuation and disenchantment . . . Intelligent and highly engaging, genuinely provocative' Guardian
'A brilliant book' Kiran Desai
'Prods the intellect, quickens the pace and captures the imagination' Sunday Times
Hamid grabs hold of the American Dream as seen through the eyes of a young Princeton grad from Pakistan in a post-9/11 world. As the protagonist, Changez, finds moderate business success and romantic love in New York City, his heritage and identity will be lost in a sea of subtle and blatant bigotry as well as international politics. In relating this journey from loving to loathing of all things American, Changez speaks to a nameless and speechless American whom he encounters in the marketplace of his home city, Lahore, Pakistan. Bhabha's English-influenced Pakistani accent proves soothing and inviting for listeners. His gentle demeanor captures the courteous and polite manner of Changez. His American accent comes in the form of a Midwestern accent with a confident almost arrogant lilt. He lapses when it comes to vocalizing women. Though lighter, his voice exudes a stoic resonance instead of a feminine one. But the casual tone of Changez telling his life story translates perfectly with the help of Bhabha's velvet voice. Simultaneous release with the Harcourt hardcover (Reviews, Dec. 11).
Best book I have read in years
Read it. Now. You will not be able to put it down it is so compelling and beautifully written.
My favourite book, honestly a brilliant read!
The reluctant fundamentalist
The style of the narrative, in the first person as one half of a conversation the other of which is unspoken, is compelling to begin with but begins to pall after a few chapters. I think the story would have been better if at some point the conversation had opened up into a dialogue. As it is the only view promulgated is that of the main character- clearly the author and any opposing point of view is deeply coloured by his, the first and only character's opinion.
Good, not great as a read and with a main point that is highly challengeable and controversial