Thursday, January 16, 2014

American Dervish

This was a beautifully crafted masterpiece. The eloquence of the words, the power of the plot, and the wonderfully developed and flawed characters come together to form a twenty-first century literary marvel.

Told through the naive eyes of a young Pakistani American boy, Hayat recounts his youth and the summer that changed his life forever, the summer when his mother's best friend, Mina, came to America with her five year old son to seek refuge from her ex-husband. Through Mina, Hayat learns about his religious roots (something his parents never bothered with) and slowly falls in love with the Quran and Mina herself. But when Mina starts to fall for Nathan, a young Jewish man, Hayat finds himself at a crossroads and the decisions he makes will haunt him forever.

Pakistani and Muslim culture shines brightly in this novel. It's a real eye opener. A must read.

Side note, I listened to the audiobook version which is narrated by the author and I HIGHLY recommend it. Ayad Akhtar can switch in between accents seamlessly and bring to life Muslim culture with his Quranic recitations and chants.

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