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How to Fight Islamist Terror from the Missionary Position

A Novel

Published by Interlink Books
Distributed by Simon & Schuster

About The Book

A HILARIOUS, SATIRICAL NOVEL FROM AWARD-WINNING INDIAN WRITER. Funny and sad, satirical and humane, this novel tells the interlinked stories of three unforgettable men whose trajectories cross in Denmark: the flamboyant Ravi, the fundamentalist Karim, and the unnamed and pragmatic Pakistani narrator. As the unnamed narrator copes with his divorce, and Ravi—despite his exterior of skeptical flamboyance—falls deeply in love with a beautiful woman who is incapable of responding in kind, Karim, their landlord, goes on with his job as a taxi driver and his regular Friday Qur’an sessions. But is he going on with something else? Who is Karim? And why does he disappear suddenly at times or receive mysterious phone calls? When a “terrorist attack” takes place in town, all three men find themselves embroiled in doubt, suspicion, and, perhaps, danger. An acerbic commentary on the times, How to Fight Islamist Terror from the Missionary Position is also a bitter-sweet, spell-binding novel about love and life today.

About The Author

Tabish Khair was born in1966 and educated in Gaya, a small town in Bihar, India. He is the acclaimed author of 6 novels—of which Interlink published two: Just Another Jihadi Jane and How to Fight Islamist Terror from the Missionary Position—and 2 poetry collections. Winner of the All India Poetry Prize, his novels have been shortlisted for more than a dozen major prizes, including the Man Asian, the DSC Prize and the Encore Prize. An Associate Professor at Aarhus University, Denmark, he has been a Leverhulme Guest Professor at Leeds University, UK, and has also been awarded guest professorships or honorary fellowships at Delhi University (India), York University (UK), Cambridge University (UK), and others.

Product Details

  • Publisher: Interlink Books (January 1, 2014)
  • Length: 224 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781566569705

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Raves and Reviews

"Witty and incisive", Kirkus Reviews

– Claire Chambers, The Huffington Post

"The title is nowhere near as irreverent, intelligent, and explosive as the slowly detonated bomb of a story inside... This book- 190 pages which force themselves to be read in one sitting- is a fine example of how much impact a short novel can have. It occupies a space somewhere between the funny, the sad and satirical. Narrative tone aims for blitheness but it is too intelligent to skim the surface and ridicule its easy-to-ridicule characters. It goes deeper to show us the men's humanities. Its language is plain" but it can't help but turn into pensive lyricism, even in its puerile jibing. What it dramatizes is how Muslims are judged, and more interestingly, how one kind of Muslim judges another, and how this judgment can be deeply complex, and condemnatory. It may only be mid-February but I suspect this will be among my most memorable reads of 2014.", The Independent (London)

Hilarious... Khair writes brilliantly about racism, and the misunderstanding between rich and poor. Unmissable., The Times (London)

Tabish Khair's new novel is the best short attempt to capture some of these realities and tensions that I have yet read. At less than 200 pages, Khair pulls off a brisk, bitingly funny narrative that manages to make some astute points about both Islamic extremism and the Western penchant for stereotyping without drawing anything like a false equivalence. And for a book so concise and witty, it is also surprisingly textured... Khair has written that rare thing: a mature comic novel., The New Republic

Scandinavia is equally as bound up with issues relating to Islamism and Islamophobia as are other parts of Europe that have far higher populations of Muslims. This brilliant new novel by Tabish Khair explores such topical issues, as well as more personal themes of love and imperfection, literature and life, city and country. How to Fight Islamist Terror from the Missionary Position's tight plot and its accelerating accrual of clues and tension mean that the novel inevitably invites comparison with popular Scandinavian crime dramas such as The Killing, Borgen or The Bridge... This is a fast-paced, hilarious novel that nonetheless has sufficient depth to withstand several re-readings. If there's any justice, it's going to be as big a hit in Euro-America as it has been in Khair's home country of India., Claire Chambers, The Huffington Post

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