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The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid: Q & A

December 29, 2009

The Reluctant Fundamentalist let me escape my Hyderabad to Vijayawada early morning train ride. I barely noticed the 5 people sharing the seat with me, pushing themselves into the protective boundary I had made with my elbow. But despite this, I did not gain a fondness for this book.

In the clip shown above, Hamid talks at length about the ambiquity of national identity. (For those of us who have been living in this skin for decades, it is old and tired). But in the book, Changez’s story bargains and sells the theme of muslims being fundamentally violent, even if they are reluctant. I wasn’t pleased about Changez’s pleasure at 9-11 and the book’s ending, likewise, annoyed me. Is this supposed to be provocative? I was provoked into a sharp frown. But I did enjoy Erica’s sub-plot. In fact, can Hamid re-write his book with Erica as the central character and lose the cloying finger-wagging.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. Imran permalink
    January 9, 2010 5:37 am

    I read this book about a year ago and thought it was a really good book. I liked the way the story was told. It was really interesting 🙂

  2. January 9, 2010 10:32 am

    [Spoiler Alert]

    I did like reading it. But I didn’t like the part where Changez is happy that America got attacked and when he turns out to be a terrorist killer in the end. I mean, come on’, what is that supposed to tell me ?

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