- Title: Terrorist
- Author: John Updike
- ISBN: 9780307264657
- Page: 314
- Format: Hardcover
The ever surprising John Updike s twenty second novel is a brilliant contemporary fiction that will surely be counted as one of his most powerful It tells of eighteen year old Ahmad Ashmawy Mulloy and his devotion to Allah and the words of the Holy Qur an, as expounded to him by a local mosque s imam.The son of an Irish American mother and an Egyptian father who disappearThe ever surprising John Updike s twenty second novel is a brilliant contemporary fiction that will surely be counted as one of his most powerful It tells of eighteen year old Ahmad Ashmawy Mulloy and his devotion to Allah and the words of the Holy Qur an, as expounded to him by a local mosque s imam.The son of an Irish American mother and an Egyptian father who disappeared when he was three, Ahmad turned to Islam at the age of eleven He feels his faith threatened by the materialistic, hedonistic society he sees around him in the slumping factory town of New Prospect, in northern New Jersey Neither the world weary, depressed guidance counselor at Central High School, Jack Levy, nor Ahmad s mischievously seductive black classmate, Joryleen Grant, succeeds in diverting the boy from what his religion calls the Straight Path When he finds employment in a furniture store owned by a family of recently immigrated Lebanese, the threads of a plot gather around him, with reverberations that rouse the Department of Homeland Security But to quote the Qur an Of those who plot, God is the best.
Recent Comments "Terrorist"
i’ve been an atheist as long as i can remember and my life, in part, has been a feigned attempt toward belief. i will never believe and know this, so i scramble toward god as a tightrope walker over a net of godlessness. the point, i guess, is to get as close as possible to something i know i’ll never reach; a more sophisticated (or not) form of a kid throwing a fit after having learned that santa claus is just some miserable minimum wage worker with a fake white beard and boozy breath. radi [...]
Oh John, oh John. You ignored the idea of "write what you know." What you know well, and write beautifully about, are WASP middle-aged men of a certain socio-economic group. What you don't know is African-Americans and Muslims. You never shoulda wandered from your own back yard.This book is so full of breath-taking stereotypes that I cringed. Gack.
The term "radicalization" gets used a lot in the media; John Updike takes us behind the term and shows us the process. 18 year old Ahmad Ashmawy Mulloy becomes an example of both the process and the steps that bring someone to the 'gate' of The Straight Patha path that will lead to uncharted territory.
John Updike has earned a mantel full of awards, including a Pulitzer and a National Book Award. He knows people and he knows how tough even the most mundane lives can be. And Updike knows how to write. At his best when writing of “normal” people living flawed, empathetic lives, Updike stretches himself in his latest novel, “Terrorist.” He writes the story of eighteen-year-old Ahmad Mulloy, the American son of an Egyptian exchange student father who ran off when Ahmad was three without so [...]
Terrorist is John Updike's last novel. The novel opens and closes with Ahmad Allowy's inner thought, "These Devils seek to take away my God," and, at the end, "These Devils have taken away my God."Ahmad is a devout Muslim youth living in New Prospect, NJ, about to graduate from high school. He's living with his white mother, an artist, whose life is not quite as structured as Ahmad's. Ahmad is an outsider at school - his religious devotion is at odds with the loose, irreverent culture he sees al [...]
Okay, I didn’t exactly finish this one, but I’m finished with it. I gave it 105 pages. Do you want to know what happened in 105 pages? Ahmad met with his guidance counselor, went to church, and went to a lesson with his Qur’an teacher. That’s it. I was so bored with this that I couldn’t even bring myself to care about the blatant anti-Americanism and misogynism. The red light started flashing when I hit the 18 page description of a church mass (or whatever it’s called when it’s not [...]
Tomorrow is the ninth anniversary of September 11th, and if you really want to scare the daylights out of yourself in memoriam, then John Updike’s Terrorist can help you out with that. It is a creepy, timely, get-under-your-skin-and-make-you-itch kind of novel. But before I get to all that, I must digress a little.John Updike is also the author of one of my favorite short stories to teach to high school students, titled “A&P.” Notice how I said it’s one of my favorites, not theirs. F [...]
The main trouble with Terrorist is in the voicing of the characters. The anti-hero, Ahmad, is a half-Arab American teenager who is groomed to become a terrorist by the imam at a local mosque. In many ways, besides his faith, he is a typical teen, self-concerned, withdrawn, and amazed at the hypocricy of adults. Yet Updike, for whatever reason, inserts his stodgy authorial voice into Ahmad's body, making him sound like a geriatric middle-eastern diplomat. Despite having grown up in America, Ahmad [...]
How is this guy so successful? This book is crap. Young utterly stereotypical Muslim kid who has an Irish mother (so that updike could describe her hair and temper every 3 pages) is seduced into a terrorist cell. Also included are stereotypical, completely unbelievable Black high-school aged reluctant prostitutes and stereotypical, completely unbelievable sympathetic and apparently telepathic English teachers.
Đề cập đến một vấn đề nhạy cảm, John Updike giữ được một thái độ công bằng, thấu suốt cần thiết khi kể về cuộc đời của Ahmad, kẻ suýt thành tội đồ của toàn nước Mỹ: không bênh vực hay bào chữa, không đả kích hay phán xét, ông viết về con đường dẫn đến việc trở thành một kẻ tử vì đạo của Ahmad với một sự thấu hiểu đầy giản dị. Ông không trách mắng hay đổ tộ [...]
Although it had been decades since I read anything by Updike, I still have clear memories of his short stories about the Maples, his Rabbit series, and The Centaur. Like others, I’ve been guilty of pigeonholing him as being preoccupied with conventional middle-class people and their domestic issues (divorce, etc.). I also sensed that it wasn’t fair to do that. In terms of craft, his use of literary devices is so smooth that one can read right past something that’s exceedingly clever withou [...]
In 2006, the Don of American Literature was finally ready to address the events of 9/11. I recall that this was a time, for American artists, of numbness, of complete loss of hope and faith in the humanity we as artists struggle so tirelessly to portray, to express, to challenge, and to understand. As tons of debris were being hauled from World Trade Center Plaza, and the place was being dusted off and readied for a new era, so were America’s artists hauling out their own psychic detritus, in [...]
Our book group read this last month, and I think I'm the only one who really liked it. Updike's writing is, as always, wonderful--great descriptions of his main characters, a 17-yr-old h.s. senior who is half-Irish and half-middle Eastern and who becomes a devout Muslim, his mother, a would-be artist, and his h.s. guidance counselor, 60+ and Jewish. The kid, of course, gets pulled into a terrorist cell, and . . . It occurred to me later that the title may be ironic--Karma, read it just for the w [...]
Terrorism is on everyone’s mind these days and so I wondered how Updike would treat the subject in this book written post 9/11 but before the more recent spate of terrorist attacks that have extended to countries outside the United States.Ahmad is a US citizen, born in that country of an Irish-American mother and an absentee Egyptian father. Despite being raised by his mother, he is drawn to his father’s faith and is schooled by the shadowy imam Sheikh Rashid to follow the Straight Path of r [...]
This was probably not the place to start with Updike but I found the stereotyping of non-whites in this book pretty insulting. Look, mild disaffection with the world around and being a lonely muslim teenager you does not automatically lead to you wanting to bomb people. Change the main character's religion from Islam to Christianity and the author's treatment of his main character's motivation is shown to be at least utterly ridiculous and at worst, pretty offensive. Ahmad apparently becomes a t [...]
John Updike has never been one to drop a bollock but dear god, this is an embarrassing effort. This is not only a hammy read, but the characters, with the exception of Ahmad, are detestable caricatures who are everything a klansman would imagine a non-WASP to be. Even Ahmad speaks like a devotee of Kayyam despite being a Jersey native with an Irish mother. The glib references to Islam itself and Islamist rationale, the 'ottoman' money smuggling operation and the woman who simply MUST call and te [...]
I picked up this John Updike book while on vacation in Praque. The subject of the book was really interesting and this novel should be one of his easier accessible books. Also, I've been wanting to read Updike for a while since my favourite writer Joyce Carol Oates is always compared to him.I must say, I really enjoyed it. The story kept me enthralled and I find myself thinking about it all the time. Wondering if the reality he describes, is true. Wondering what to do if he is right.The story is [...]
In some ways Updike has written a perfect book. Expertly researched and thought-provoking, yet a perfectly paced, page-turner thriller in its own right. Just the right number of characters, all complex, imperfect, and beautifully drawn. Many times I had to remind myself that this book is fiction, and must be taken as such, which I consider a tribute to the research and writing. But, be warned, the book is consistently negative, cynical and depressing in tone. There is a cat in the book, and even [...]
Perhaps I'm ignorant of so much about Islamic faith and belief, but I found Updike's last book terrifying and powerful.The march to belief, under the tutelage of his imam, leads Ahmad Ashmawy Mulloy, son of an Irish-American mother and absent Muslim father, on a direct path to terrorism.What hit me so hard was Updike's skill in getting inside the head of a teenager, capturing his yearnings and anger, and merging his supposedly pristine faith with the ugliness and squalor of his New Prospect, NJ [...]
Forget Stephen King. This is hands-down one of the most frightening books I've ever read. In no uncertain terms, Updike shows us how the quest for God can be perverted into a desire to suppress, diminish, and eventually destroy those with different beliefs. He burrows so deeply into the mind of the believer that he seduces you into following their logic, and frightens you with how quickly you discard even the most basic respect for life outside that framework.
I had never even heard of this book until I found it in a book exchange. It is 8 years old but it seems very much a book for now. It is a fairly quick read. The writing is very good and the author treats the subject with kind of insight and respect that is so often lost in the din of hysteria and outrage writing. I found it to be a hopeful book
This book is so full of unconvincing characters and racial stereotypes that I'm stunned it was published. If it hadn't been written by John Updike, I'm certain it never would have seen the light of day. If you see this book on a shelf, run as you might from an actual terrorist.
This was my first Updike.Not a good choice.One word describes this book: awful.
Sad didn't notice that I read it around the Sept 11th anniversary---------From Publishers WeeklyRipped from the headlines doesn't begin to describe Updike's latest, a by-the-numbers novelization of the last five years' news reports on the dangers of home-grown terror that packs a gut punch. Ahmad Mulloy Ashmawy is 18 and attends Central High School in the New York metro area working class city of New Prospect, N.J. He is the son of an Egyptian exchange student who married a working-class Irish-A [...]
A very good book that lacks depth in character, in Ahmad, but rich characters overall. No doubt, Updike leaves Ahmad lacking in depth on purpose because he thinks all absolutist do not have complexity to them.Essentially, I think the book is about the search for meaning in our daily life filled with consumeristic impulses that seems to be a bottomless pit. Ahmed also wants to do something that is greater than himself a self-sacrifice that is significant in the world instead of succumbing to the [...]
Hẳn đây là cuốn đầu tiên mình đọc 50 trang cuối éo khác gì bò, đến độ không đủ kiên nhẫn đọc từng chữ cẩn thận sắp xếp ý trong đầu nữa mà lướt qua cho xong chuyện Chỉ còn có 50 trang thôi mà cảm giác đọc mãi không hết 1 trang, vừa đọc vừa đếm. 371. 372. 373. 374. Sao mãi chưa đến 405
Will he or won’t he? In this post-9/11 coming of age tale, Ahmad Mulloy-Ashmawy is a high school senior convinced that the culture in which he lives is completely unclean. Child of an Irish-American mother and a long-gone Egyptian father, he identifies with his Arabic side. By his own choice he began Islamic studies at age 11. Under the tutelage of a fundamentalist imam, he has dedicated his life to Islam, scorning the temptations of the flesh. Or is it a mask for his own insecurities? While e [...]
Not long ago, I read an introduction to a large collection of Updike's short stories, which was written by Updike himself. If I remember correctly, it ends with him describing his charge as "giv[ing] the mundane its beautiful due."Updike's still working overtime with the mundane in Terrorist, but there's almost nothing beautiful or dutiful about this story. Instead, it's composed of mediocre persons trying to be larger than life - or at least only halfheartedly resisting Updike's trying to make [...]
So, in the academic program I'm in at my high school, you pick a topic to do a big essay on during Senior Year. Your ~*Extended Essay*~. Apparently a big deal. Or something. So, anyway, I chose to do an analytical paper on this novel. My research question is: "How do Updike's Western prejudices affect his characterization of the main Muslim character, Ahmad?" Of course, because my rough draft was done in a complete rush, I don't have my ideas really written out how I'd like yet, but I have my th [...]
While Updike can write "well" in that most of his sentences flow nicely and often have interesting word choices - and may be somewhat lyrical and intuitive/insightful - and the book reads quickly, I hated this book. It was two-dimensional, repetitive, and mostly boring. Very unsubtle. Not to mention highly offensive.Obnoxious characters, most of them very stereotyped and shallow. Fat, depressed wife who eats junk food, watches TV, doesn't cook, smells, and is so fat that she can't have sex (supp [...]
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