|Amazon Price||New from||Used from|
Changez is in Manila on 9/11 and sees the towers come down on TV. He tells the American, "...I smiled. Yes, despicable as it may sound, my initial reaction was to be remarkably pleased... I was caught up in the symbolism of it all, the fact that someone had so visibly brought America to her knees..." When he returns to New York, there is a palpable change in attitudes toward him, starting right at immigration. His name and his face render him suspect.
Ongoing trouble between Pakistan and India urge Changez to return home for a visit, despite his parents' advice to stay where he is. While there, he realizes that he has changed in a way that shames him. "I was struck at first by how shabby our house appeared... I was saddened to find it in such a state... This was where I came from... and it smacked of lowliness." He exorcises that feeling and once again appreciates his home for its "unmistakable personality and idiosyncratic charm." While at home, he lets his beard grow. Advised to shave it, even by his mother, he refuses. It will be his line in the sand, his statement about who he is. His company sends him to Chile for another business valuation; his mind filled with the troubles in Pakistan and the U.S. involvement with India that keeps the pressure on. His work and the money he earns have been overtaken by resentment of the United States and all it stands for.
Hamid's prose is filled with insight, subtly delivered: "I felt my age: an almost childlike twenty-two, rather than that permanent middle-age that attaches itself to the man who lives alone and supports himself by wearing a suit in a city not of his birth." In telling of the janissaries, Christian boys captured by Ottomans and trained to be soldiers in the Muslim Army, his Chilean host tells him: "The janissaries were always taken in childhood. It would have been far more difficult to devote themselves to their adopted empire, you see, if they had memories they could not forget." Changez cannot forget, and Hamid makes the reader understand that--and all that follows. --Valerie Ryan
I thought it book was not as interesting as other people. I thought it was a little cliche (especially with symbolism, like Erica... Read morePublished 2 days ago by Emily Winston
Beautifully written, but story line was a bit too predictable. Authors attempt to justify the resentment of America in Muslim Asia. It made the read a bit too tiring.Published 8 days ago by Amazon Customer
Interesting. It is all written from the point of the reluctant fundamentalist. Different, but a good read. Unsettling at points, but a really good read.Published 9 days ago by Ruth A. Mennom
The novel was quite short. But very cool writing style. Kept you thinking. 5 stars apparently the movie is nothing like this novel.Published 9 days ago by Jeremy Monat
Kept me glued from the beginning to the end. Extremely well written.Published 11 days ago by satsita
I purchased this because I had to for school, the violence is inferred at the end.Published 15 days ago by Marilyn Geer Rivera
The story was fairly good but nothing was resolved or tied up.
Would have made a better book if there had been an ending.
I loved this book because:
- it is unique in that the entire book is monologue as Changez is talking to an unknown American in a cafe in Pakistan. Read more