The ABA Book Club Reviews – The Reluctant Fundamentalist by Mohsin Hamid

Welcome to our book club!

Every month we review and recommend a great book for you to practice reading in English. The language in these books is not complex from a literary point of view, but they do require a certain level of understanding.

The book we will be recommending today is The Reluctant Fundamentalist, a novel by Mohsin Hamid. It was published in 2007 and the movie, starring Kate Hudson and Riz Ahmed, premiered in 2012.

It is a beautiful novel, written as a dramatic monologue (it is narrated by the main character with no dialogue and no other points of view). It is a post-9/11 book about the impact on one man of the Al Qaida attacks and the American reaction to them.

Reading Level Intermediate
Genre Fiction
Length (pages) 208
Original Date of Publishing 2007


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 meeting . . .

Changez is living an immigrant’s dream of America. At the top of his class at Princeton, he is snapped up by the elite “valuation” firm of Underwood Samson. He thrives on the energy of New York, and his infatuation 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 budding relationship with Erica eclipsed by the reawakened ghosts of her past. And Changez’s own identity is in crises as well, unearthing allegiances more fundamental than money, power, and maybe even love.


Bearded – to have a beard (the hair that grows on a man’s cheeks and chin).

Dusk – the time when day changes into night and the sky begins to get darker.

Fateful – having important results.

Snapped up – to buy or take (something or someone) quickly or eagerly.

Infatuation – a feeling of foolish or very strong love or admiration for someone or something.

Exalted – to raise (someone or something) to a higher level.

Overturned – to decide that (a ruling, decision, etc.) is wrong and change it.

Budding – beginning to develop.

Unearthing- to find or discover (something) that was hidden or lost.


To read more reviews and find out where to buy this book, if you think you’d enjoy reading it, visit Goodreads.

the reluctant fundamentalist

Do you have a special book you would recommend to your friends? Let us know!

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