- Paperback: 208 pages
- Publisher: Vintage Classics; Centenary Ed edition (7 Oct. 2004)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0099478390
- ISBN-13: 978-0099478393
- Product Dimensions: 13 x 1.3 x 19.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (90 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 7,102 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Quiet American Paperback – 7 Oct 2004
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"A master of storytelling" (The Times)
"One of the finest writers of any language" (Washington Post)
"A superb storyteller - he had a talent for depicting local colour, a keen sense of the dramatic, an eye for dialogue, and skill in pacing his prose" (New York Times)
"There has been no novel of any political scope about Vietnam since Graham Greene wrote The Quiet American" (Harper's)
"It might be nearly 60 years since The Quiet American was first published, but it still evokes the exotic promise of the Orient, and the troubled relationship Vietnam has with the West" (Wanderlust)
'A great writer who spoke brilliantly to a whole generation. Prophet-like.' (Alec Guinness)
'A master of storytelling.' (The Times) --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
So he sets about helping the Vietnamese find a third way between French colonialism and communism. It takes the already jaded Fowler to see that such idealism is not only misplaced, but cannot possibly coexist with the notion that the ends will justify the means.
Writing in the 1950s, as France struggled to hold Indo-China (or leave with dignity) Greene's is a contemporary story. Yet it reads as if the author's already been through the Vietnam War and witnessed the Quiet American's greatest folly.
This book embodies Greene's theme of man's blindness, his stumbling through life rather strolling down a chosen path. Fowler, the Foreign correspondent, who wallows through life and the American, Pyle, who is led by his naive allegance to democracy. Pyle's determination to spread the gospel of democracy to Indo-Chine bombards the ordinary Fowler with the extraordinary. In fact this highlights the true realism of Greene's writing and message of the novel: what does a Vietnamese peasant care of politics? His daily struggle is for a bowl of rice whether democratic or communist.
The colonial setting of Indo-Chine is potrayed with ease by Greene, not to mention the imagery.
All in all, this a spectacular read bringing home the absurdity, harshness and reality of the troubles in Vietnam.
I picked up this novel because I imagined it to be full of the atmosphere of war-torn Vietnam in the 1950s, a historical portrait of the end of colonial Indo-China. And that is indeed one feature of the book, but it is more involving still: realistic characters, consistent only in their complexity, a moving story of a triangular relationship between two men and a woman, a stand-off between the opposing ideologies of cynicism and idealism. I was left wondering: was this a happy ending or not?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Traces the early American involvement in Viet Nam, in the 1950s. Useful for understanding some of the blunders and tragedies which followed. A fine novel.Published 1 month ago by E. Bowen
bought it for a present for my husband and he has started reading it and enjoying it.Published 1 month ago by Angie
Classic Graham Greene that reads as relevant in the post American war in Vietnam as it did when written before this time.Published 2 months ago by Jonas