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Updike's latest offers up a probing post-9/11 history lesson on America—its mythology and street realities, religious attitudes, and the myriad nationalities that have borne this country fruit. Lane has his work cut out, and for the most part delivers. He contends with multiple foreign accents and American dialects, not to mention gospel singing and Arabic recitations of the Koran. The tale follows a righteous Muslim teenager named Ahmad, an (Irish-Arab) American born and bred in northern New Jersey, and his seemingly inevitable journey toward a domestic suicide attack. Ahmad's Irish mother, Jewish guidance counselor and Lebanese employer/handler are all rendered with distinction by Lane. But Ahmad's accent is odd and hard to trace, almost seeming to contain a Dixie influence. Lane voices an African-American schoolmate in similar style, creating the potential for confusion when the two interact. Phone calls, snippets of TV shows, speeches and sermons are treated with a through-a-speaker effect that is sometimes disconcerting. But it doesn't detract from a generally rich audio experience, one built on diverse narration and ethnically sprawling storytelling.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Not only does John Updike write tales of suburban angst; he also has a long history of ruminating on faith. Critics compare his latest novel to In the Beauty of the Lilies and The Coup except that Terrorist has an intensely contemporary flare. It's almost scandalous to see one of America's literary lions toying with such an inflammatory topicand in the guise of a thriller, no less. The litmus test of his success with Terrorist is whether he answers the central question: What drives someone to become a terrorist? Terrorist is exceedingly well researched, and Updike writes beautifully. Still, many reviewers criticize Updike for creating Ahmad as a puppet rather than a character. That a puppet is exactly what his Imam wishes him to be begs the question whether Ahmad is a successful creation or just a thin caricature.
Copyright © 2004 Phillips & Nelson Media, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.See all Editorial Reviews
I loved the book. It is the first time I have read Updike since he passed away in 2009. Once again, his unwavering yet precise eye digs beyond the surface of any facade. Read morePublished 2 days ago by GerryM.
Fascinating description of how a vulnerable and devout teenager can be influenced by extremists. Scary.Published 7 days ago by SPM
John Updike’s “Terrorist” is a masterful depiction of the life of a young man caught in a circle full of intrigues he never really gets to understand. Read morePublished 6 months ago by John T C
First, I must say that I am a huge fan of John Updike. I enjoyed this book but it was certainly not Updike at his best. Read morePublished 7 months ago by BrokenArrow
A very thought provoking novel that addresses one of the most traumatizing events in U.S. history, the terrorist attack on the World Trade Centers.Published 8 months ago by Amazon Customer
Not sure why there are so many positive reviews for this book.
I guess everyone else likes listening to some little punk lecture his elders with Islamic surras and some... Read more
I usually read the writings of the late John Updike because of the beautiful writing and the insights I get about human thought and experience. Read morePublished 15 months ago by StanEvolve
I had not read an Updike book since the Rabbit books----years ago.
Some reviewers think Updike has lost it. I don't think so. This is not great----but it is good. Read more
Good job taking us into the mind of the main character and his disdain for Western culture. This is set in New Jersey, lots of detail to local color but I don't know why Updike... Read morePublished 16 months ago by jeffpickens