Shawn Sorensen's Reviews > The Reluctant Fundamentalist

The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid
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I was impressed with the unusual style and timely/timeless themes, especially fear and what we choose to do with it. The entire book is in 2nd person - a Pakistani citizen speaking directly to what is supposedly an American tourist in a restaurant in Lahore, a city of several million in Pakistan. The monologue is under-laid with tension as the narrator talks about his days as a business man in New York, how he perceived the culture and how he felt to fall in love with a young American woman with the events of 9/11 always in the fore- or background. What the book does best is address the paranoia/xenophobia running deep through American culture, how we so often ignore or destroy what we don't understand. The only reason it doesn't get five stars is that it isn't quite long enough - I wanted to know more details about what was going on with the girlfriend's mental state, more about international politics, for example. But some of the best books introduce you to things, open the door. Nobody has all the answers, most of us don't choose violence to serve our ends, sometimes all you can do is carry on with the life you have. A powerful ending for all its sad realities.
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message 1: by Philip (new) - added it

Philip I may read it for the star it's lacking. I feel like I need a short deep book right about now.

Shawn Sorensen If that's the case then "The Reluctant Fundamenatlist" will be perfect for you. It's unusual, important, poignant and riveting. Enjoy & let me know what you think!

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