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|Print List Price:||£9.36|
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Honour Kindle Edition
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Short punchy chapters, several intermingling story strands, and a fabulous cast of characters populate an involving story about an honour killing in a western consumerist setting - who is the oppressor? Who is the oppressed? What exactly is honour? The story moves briskly along with a supple use of language and glorious black humour, flitting between fundamentalists with murderous intent, advertising executives with one eye on the bottom line and one scouting for the next bandwagon, and bored aristocratic wives with a penchant for rolling in the hay...
You'll finish this book thinking you've read a great romping thriller. But then you'll realise you read something far more than that - you read an extremely clever subtle observation of the world in which we live, where norms are learned and the lines drawn constituting Right and Wrong are not static, nor absolute.
A cracking read & top marks from me.
I first read it last year and loved it. As I say, the story wouldn't let me go. I had to go back to it.
This is about a young man, Azeem, with a jihadi past. When the novel opens he has settled in London, deeply in love with a westernized woman, Shirin, and living a cool, laid back life.
Azeem is setting up a communications campaign aimed at promoting tolerance and understanding between Muslims and Christians. To do this he is working with an ad agency whose executives include a coke-addicted MD called Wythenshawe and an eccentric German research guru called Dr Klinker.
The comedy of these situations contrasts with the toxic tragedy which is brewing in the wake of an honour killing and a terrorist attack in London. Azeem is torn between his liberal westernized ideals and the pull of his jihadi past, embodied by his ex comrade-in-arms, Abdul Khattak.
Abdul Khattak is brilliantly portrayed in his conflicts - he too was brought up in England, but he has turned against Britain and all it stands for. Freddie Omm portrays Abdul sympathetically but unsparingly, so that the reader almost ends up sympathizing with his point of view, despite the violent atrocities he commits in the name of Allah.
Set in England, France, Germany and Turkey, this is an atmospheric, disturbing, always riveting read. It is written in an easy. fluid way and interwoven narrative threads, giving a multi-perspectived viewpoint which allows each character to come fully to life. The mix of fast-paced action, laugh-aloud comedy, poignant, hearbreaking observation reminds me of independent films of the kind directed by the Coen brothers, Wes Anderson or, sometimes, Quentin Tarantino. But, being a book, there is much more potential than is possible in film to get inside each situation and explore it to the full.
This is stylish, sharp and compelling, a real page-turner with pure pleasure on every page.
I would recommend this book to anyone who loves well-written, pacy intelligent literary thrillers.
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