The Reluctant Fundamentalist

“Extreme times call for extreme reactions, extreme writing. Hamid has done something extraordinary with this novel.”Washington Post 

 

At a café table in Lahore, a bearded Pakistani man converses with an uneasy American stranger. As dusk deepens to night, he begins the tale that has brought them to this fateful encounter . . . 

          Changez is living an immigrant’s dream of America. At the top of his class at Princeton, he is snapped up by an elite valuation firm. He thrives on the energy of New York, and his budding romance with elegant, beautiful Erica promises entry into Manhattan society at the same exalted level once occupied by his own family back in Lahore. But in the wake of September 11, Changez finds his position in his adopted city suddenly overturned, and his relationship with Erica shifting. And Changez’s own identity is in seismic shift as well, unearthing allegiances more fundamental than money, power, and maybe even love. 

Mohsin Hamid was born in 1971 in Lahore, Pakistan, and moved to the US at the age of 18 to study at Princeton University and Harvard Law School. He then worked as a management consultant in New York, and later as a freelance journalist back in Lahore. 

His first novel was Moth Smoke (2000), winner of a Betty Trask Award and shortlisted for the PEN/Hemingway Award. Moth Smoke was made into a television mini-series in Pakistan and an operetta in Italy, and was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year in 2000.

In 2007 his second novel, The Reluctant Fundamentalist, was published and shortlisted for the 2007 Man Booker Prize for Fiction. In 2008, it won the South Bank Show Annual Award for Literature and was shortlisted for the 2008 Commonwealth Writers Prize (Eurasia Region, Best Book) and the 2008 James Tait Black Memorial Prize (for fiction). A short story based on the novel was also published in The Paris Reviewin 2006.

Mohsin Hamid discussing his novel The Reluctant Fundamentalist

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