Monday, August 3, 2015

A Rebellious Heart

The Reluctant FundamentalistThe Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

“’The reluctant fundamentalist” is everything except about a fundamentalist. I have read first time a book written by a Pakistani about a Pakistani in America. Only reading few pages was sufficient to take it off from the shelf and get it issued on my name and it did keep its promises till the last page. Narrated by the central character, entire novel revolves around him, his love interest, his American job and even American dream which gets fulfilled only to get unravelled afterwards due to that atrocious-notorious-whatever-you-call event in at least the American history: 9-11 attack. How the attack subconsciously and consciously affect an individual is what Mr. Mohsin Hamid, the author of the novel, strives to depict through his work and in such a believable manner. Changez, the central character, is a brilliant guy who has come to America to realize all those dreams he cannot do being in his own country or if I may say so in his own continent. American official stance of either-you-are-with-me-or-with-terrorists alienated many of his liberal supporters and planted the seed of mistrust among youths like Changez. As an Indian, I empathize with him when he invokes Asia, the mother continent and he ruffles few feather when he appears to be a bit more biased against India. But as a neutral literary reader, the novel provides enough moments to entertain us, educate us, engage us and above all help us grow neutral or even more positive views towards Pakistan, a country we are taught to loathe.

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