The Quiet American
Into the intrigue and violence of Indo-China comes Pyle, a young idealistic American sent to promote democracy through a mysterious “Third Force.” As his naïve optimism starts to cause bloodshed, his friend Fowler, a cynical foreign correspondent, finds it hard to stand aside and watch. But even as he intervenes he wonders why: for the...more
Popular Answered Questions
I never knew a man who had better motives for all the trouble he caused .
I assume that everyone for once in own life had to face such a moment that , though convinced about doing the right thing , felt nevertheless poorly and uncomfortably . How is it possible , we asked then , we acted righteously so why such bad feeling , such turbulence in our mind ? We did a good choice so why this bile that fills our mouths ? Why that need to rationalize our deed ? There was no other way , we say . But re ...more
Like The End of the Affair, this is a Greene novel that affects you viscerally. It is a war novel, set in Vietnam. Being so, it is not cheerful or pretty: dead children lying in the street and the like. It hits on the complexities of war; the complexity of morals: how it's impossible to stay neutral forever on such matters when you’re directly involved: you have to make a decision: you must decide, or you're as good as dead.
"'You can rule me out,' ...more
As I read The Quiet American, I felt myself sliding down a slippery path to a very messy era I remember all too well. I was 12 in 1960 so I was a teen as the build up of the American turn i ...more
Greene is my kind of guy: He’s got a jaundiced view of people and the world. This novel thrums with moral ambiguity. And reading this now in 2012, some 60 years after it ...more
In death, my brother has moved into a sort of hero ...more
My problem with the book was a problem common to many similar authors (DeLillo, I'm looking at you): it was very male-centric and I got annoyed. Phuong, the love/lust/possession interest in the book, was never given a character, described as innocent, childish, a sexual object, and a caretaker in turn. I realize ...more
The Quiet American is Greene's exploration of relationships and politics against the backdrop of the conflict in Vietnam in the early 1950s.
Thinking about it, this is really an amazing book and shows Greene's ability to observe current affairs - and look behind smokescreens. The "amazing" aspect of t ...more
Alden Pyle, a young American newly arrived in war-torn Vietnam, is a force for good. He’s all for preserving freedom and liberty for the suffering masses of Asia, after all --- so goes the then popular domino theory --- if Vietnam goes red, so will Siam, Malaysia, the Philippines and Indonesia. He’s also no fan of the Red’s enemy, the French, who are fighting a losing battle for their Indochinese colony. A ‘Third Force’ that is composed of na ...more
Greene was a master of his craft, his characterisations are superb. Some of the scenes (my favourite is his visit to Cholon) are so vividly portrayed that one can feel, hear and smell them.
The narrative is perfectly paced, and Greene u ...more
It's a grim and seedy story, part mystery, with a wonderful sense of time and place. Both Fowler and Pyle were well presented and even though Phoung has ...more
Normally I get really, really pissed off when previous "patrons" (a.k.a. selfish scumbags) have marked up my library books. Disrespect to the book, disrespect to the future readers. It sucks. In this case, the marks ended up being quite interesting. Someone went through and circled every instance of "innocent" and variations thereof. Which is sort of the whole point of the story.
Set in the middle of the First Indochina War, also known as the Franco-Vietnamese War, a dispassionate British journal ...more
Reporting the conflicts in Vietnam for the British press is Thomas Fowl ...more
After rereading this for the first time in over 30 years, I was struck by how much of the book is about love. When I read this back in my college days, I focused on the political and social commentary about colonialism and war; ever since, that is how I have thought of this book. But although the political struggle of the Vietminh against the French & Pyle's political ideals play an important part in the book, they are really just the backgroun ...more
Thomas Fowler is a British correspondent stationed in Saigon Vietnam co ...more
i think if the book has a weakness (which i think it does, given the general lack of impact at the end), it's that the am ...more
I would recommend ...more
|The Filipino Group: [F2F Book Discussions] F2F43 | The Quiet American by Graham Greene | July 25, 2015, Saturday, 3-6 pm | Venue: Ba Noi's Vietnamese Cuisine, 12B Tropical Palms, 103 Dela Rosa St. corner Perea St., Legaspi Village, Makati||29||41||Jul 27, 2015 06:46PM|
|The Filipino Group: [F2F Book Discussions] July 2015: The Quiet American by Graham Greene | Moderated by Marie||111||92||Jul 22, 2015 11:25PM|
|"Don't go on in the East with that parrot cry about a threat to the individual soul. Here you'd find yourself on the wrong side - it's they, who stand for the individual and we just stand for Private 23987, unit in the global strategy."||2||58||Dec 03, 2014 09:33PM|
|Goodreads Librari...: wrong page number||1||12||Jul 19, 2014 04:12AM|
|Goodreads Librari...: The Quiet American||4||24||Jun 08, 2014 02:17PM|
|50 books to read ...: The Quiet American - Discussion||7||25||Mar 22, 2014 10:15AM|
Although Greene objected strongly to being described as a “Catholic novelist” rather than as a “novelist who happened to be Ca ...more