- Paperback: 192 pages
- Publisher: Vintage; New edition edition (4 Jan. 2001)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0099286076
- ISBN-13: 978-0099286073
- Product Dimensions: 13 x 1.4 x 19.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (120 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,390,087 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Quiet American (Vintage classics) Paperback – 4 Jan 2001
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"There has been no novel of any political scope about Vietnam since Graham Greene wrote "The Quiet American,"" -- "Harper's"
'A great writer who spoke brilliantly to a whole generation. Prophet-like.' (Alec Guinness)
'A master of storytelling.' (The Times) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
I must say that I have equally enjoyed The Quiet American.
I enjoy Greene's brevity. He paints pictures expertly with a minimum number of words but so eloquently.
I don't want to introduce any spoilers but I had sort of guessed how the protagonist was involved in the ending but it did not protract from my enjoyment.
The quiet American of the title is Alden Pyle, a young idealist who has come to Indo-China with the intent of promoting Democracy via an undefined `Third Force' using whatever means are available to him. He is already dead at the start of the novel. His story is told by Fowler, a cynical, world-weary English journalist who is intrigued by the ideals and motives of Pyle but their relationship is complicated by love for the same girl.
This is typical Graham Greene, related at a languid tropical pace. He manages superbly to convey the paradoxical allure of a country racked by violence and confusion yet at the same time intoxicatingly warm and human. I personally find Greene's novels a bit patchy but this may be one of his better works.
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
The incoherence in the narrative has a purpose which escapes me....and made it difficult to get absorbed in the characters e.g fowler,Pyle...but well written nonetheless....Published 3 months ago by kc
Excellent book in every way despite its age and historical connotations.Published 5 months ago by M. L. Le Dune
Another beautifully crafted book from "England's greatest writer".Published 5 months ago by Mrs E Locke
On of Graham Greene's wonderful stories, recalling the Vitenam War.Published 6 months ago by L. S. Robinson
I can see why John le Carre is said to bow his knee to this classic. It's construction is impeccable.Published 7 months ago by Tab 5
I am currently reading through Graham Greene novels and this was one on my shortlist that I haven't yet seen. Read morePublished 8 months ago by AP Corfield