Now a major motion picture
Short-listed for the Man Booker Prize
A New York Times bestseller
A Washington Post and San Francisco Chronicle Best Book of the Year
A New York Times Notable Book
“Extreme times call for extreme reactions, extreme writing. Hamid has done something extraordinary with this novel.”—Washington Post
“One of those achingly assured novels that makes you happy to be a reader.”—Junot Diaz
“Brief, charming, and quietly furious . . . a resounding success.”—Village Voice
At a café table in Lahore, a bearded Pakistani man converses with an uneasy American stranger. As dusk deepens to night, he begins the tale that has brought them to this fateful encounter . . .
Changez is living an immigrant’s dream of America. At the top of his class at Princeton, he is snapped up by an elite valuation firm. He thrives on the energy of New York, and his budding romance with elegant, beautiful Erica promises entry into Manhattan society at the same exalted level once occupied by his own family back in Lahore. But in the wake of September 11, Changez finds his position in his adopted city suddenly overturned, and his relationship with Erica shifting. And Changez’s own identity is in seismic shift as well, unearthing allegiances more fundamental than money, power, and maybe even love.
Hamid's second book (after Moth\t\t Smoke) is an intelligent and absorbing 9/11 novel, written from the\t\t perspective of Changez, a young Pakistani whose sympathies, despite his fervid\t\t immigrant embrace of America, lie with the attackers. The book unfolds as a\t\t monologue that Changez delivers to a mysterious American operative over dinner\t\t at a Lahore, Pakistan, cafe. Pre-9/11, Princeton graduate Changez is on top of\t\t the world: recruited by an elite New York financial company, the 22-year-old\t\t quickly earns accolades from his hard-charging supervisor, plunges into\t\t Manhattan's hip social whirl and becomes infatuated with Erica, a fellow\t\t Princeton graduate pining for her dead boyfriend. But after the towers fall,\t\t Changez is subject to intensified scrutiny and physical threats, and his\t\t co-workers become markedly less affable as his beard grows in ("a form of\t\t protest," he says). Erica is committed to a mental institution, and Changez,\t\t upset by his adopted country's "growing and self-righteous rage," slacks off at\t\t work and is fired. Despite his off-putting commentary, the damaged Changez\t\t comes off as honest and thoughtful, and his creator handles him with a\t\t sympathetic grace.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Extremely well. Engaging, page flipping, thought provoking.
But I was hoping for a little more substance to the conclusion.
The reluctant fundamentalist
Very interesting narrative style. Thought provoking story. I cannot get it to close on my iPhone, though.
A fascinating first person narration.