From the winner of the Pulitzer Prize
By Ayad Akhtar
A stirring and explosive debut novel about an American Muslim family's struggle with faith and belonging. From Pulitzer Prize winner Ayad Akhtar.
THE EXPLOSIVE NOVEL FROM PULITZER PRIZE WINNER AYAD AKHTAR
'Terrific' The Times
'Extraordinary' Sunday Express
'A great American story' Metro
HOW OFTEN DOES SOMEONE YOU MEET TRANSFORM YOUR LIFE?
Hayat Shah was captivated by Mina long before he met her: his mother's beautiful, brilliant friend is a family legend. When he learns that Mina is leaving Pakistan to live with the Shahs in America, Hayat is thrilled.
Hayat's father is less enthusiastic. Ever wary of fundamentalism, he doesn't relish the idea of Mina's fervid devotion under his roof.
What no one expects is that when Mina shows Hayat the beauty of the Quran, it will utterly transform him.
Mina's real magic may be that the Shah household becomes a happy one. But when Mina catches the eye of a Jewish doctor and family friend, Hayat's jealousy is inflamed by the community's anti-Semitism - and he acts with catastrophic consequences for those he loves most.
A DEVASTATINGLY MOVING NOVEL FROM ONE OF AMERICA'S MOST EXCITING WRITERS
A Kirkus Reviews Best Book of the Year
A Globe and Mail Best Book of the Year
A Shelf Awareness Best Book of the Year
An O, the Oprah Magazine Book of the Year
Ayad Akhtar is an American-born, first-generation Pakistani-American from Milwaukee, Wisconsin. An alumnus of the Graduate Film Program at Colombia University, he is the author of numerous plays and screenplays. He was star and co-writer of The War Within, which premiered at the 2005 Toronto Film Festival and was released internationally. The film was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award for Best Screenplay and an International Press Academy Satellite Award for Best Picture. His stage play, Disgraced, won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 2013. American Dervish is his first novel.
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- Publication date:
03 Jan 2013
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A terrific first novel, warm and wise. — Kate Saunders, THE TIMES
this book is prescient and timely in both recognising and dramatically exploring this increasingly unbreachable social divide. — ENTERTAINMENT FOCUS
his dialogue is free-flowing and natural, and he has a good eye for small visual details within a scene that colour the mood of the action around them. — Alan Morrison, THE HERALD
Both extremists and the ambivalent are accorded even-handed coverage and the characterisation is strong — Catherine Taylor, THE GUARDIAN
American Dervish is an extraordinary novel and one you certainly won't regret reading — Roddy Ashworth, SUNDAY EXPRESS
Akhtar proves the capacity of the great American stories to be endlessly renewed by each generation of writers — Claire Allfree, METRO
There are themes here reminiscent of The Go-Between by L.P.Hartley and Ian McEwan's more recent Atonement, of a life scarred by chame at a childish act that has catastrophic consequences in adult life. — TLS
American Dervish is about the collision of cultures, identity and religion in 1980s America. — BIG ISSUE IN THE NORTH
a pleasing read — THE SUNDAY BUSINESS POST
Ayad Akhtar's first novel is deftly plotted, with a frame narrative that shows how Hayat's sense of shame pursues him into adulthood. There are shades of Ian McEwan's Atonement, but Akhtar's writing has a crisp, imagistic quality all its own. — THE INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY