Exit West

Exit West

A Novel

Book - 2017
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"From the internationally bestselling author of The Reluctant Fundamentalist and How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia, a love story that unfolds in a world being irrevocably transformed by migration. In a country teetering on the brink of civil war, two young people meet--sensual, fiercely independent Nadia and gentle, restrained Saeed. They embark on a furtive love affair, thrust into premature intimacy by the unrest roiling their city. When it explodes, turning familiar streets into a patchwork of checkpoints and bomb blasts, they begin to hear whispers about doors--doors that can whisk people far away, if perilously and for a price. As violence and the threat of violence escalate, Nadia and Saeed decide that they no longer have a choice. Leaving their homeland and their old lives behind, they find a door and step through. Exit West is an epic compressed into a slender page-turner--both completely of our time and for all time, Mohsin Hamid's most ambitious and electrifying novel yet"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : Riverhead Books, 2017
ISBN: 9780735212176
Branch Call Number: FICTION HAMID 2017
Characteristics: 231 pages ; 22 cm


From Library Staff

2018 Everybody Reads

A young couple decides to flee their war-torn country with the aid of mysterious doors that appear out of nowhere and take them to the West.

Saeed and Nadia fall in love in an increasingly precarious city on the verge of civil war. There's an escape, if they can find one of the doors that seem to appear out of nowhere that will allow them to emerge in the west.

A bittersweet love story set in an unnamed country ravaged with sectarian violence, where the only escape is through a portal leading to the West. But at what price?

From the critics

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Dec 29, 2018

On Barack Obama's Top Books of 2017

Dec 28, 2018

Ohio State 2018 list: https://www.osu.edu/alumni/news/ohio-state-alumni-magazine/issues/summer-2018/10-books-to-add-to-your-summer-reading-list.html

Nov 28, 2018

Very interesting blend of fantasy elements and a realistic look at the problems immigrants face when forced to leave their home country and attempt to assimilate into other cultures. The book does a good job of blending these elements into a character-centered story that keeps you interested in the young couple's plight. Very relevant to today's current cultural climate.

Sep 18, 2018

emigrants saeed and nadia
the world has opened itself up in a mysterious but beautiful way, as doors are appearing that transport anyone who walks through them to other parts of the world.

Sep 12, 2018

A powerful book about escaping from a country, relationships and how people change over time, adjusting to new places and people....with a touch of "magic" or science fiction. "Doors" can help people escape from one country to another. So many people have escaped that the places they land have changed socially too, with locals reacting negatively or fleeing the area. IN the end one country comes up with a novel solution. The main story follows the two protagonists and they meet, decide to escape together, and the experiences they go through in each place. It is a powerful, beautifully written book.

Jul 02, 2018

Important attempt by Mohsin to conjure up the horrifying circumstances that propel refugees to leave their homelands and seek asylum elsewhere. I chose this for Book Club and we had a great discussion, but I did find myself wishing I cared more about the two main characters. Their situation was frightening, but I didn't feel emotionally engaged by them and didn't find their relationship credible or compelling. The suggestion that refugees can slip into new worlds via the internet/social media/phones/black rectangles was interesting - some in the group I was with found the magic hokey or confusing. Important book to read as our country drifts toward xenophobia. But if "Show, don't tell" is still the rule for fiction - and I think it is - this book got a bit too tell-y as it went on.

ArapahoeAlicia Jun 28, 2018

Beautifully written and bittersweet, a true human story not isolated to the experiences of war and immigration. This book made me think and feel in new ways.

Jun 26, 2018

Beautifully told with fluid writing. A touch of magic but the story is still very relevant and real. Timely and thought provoking.

May 09, 2018

Exit West is an incredible insight on the refugee experience - an experience most of us will never know first hand. The writing is quite striking, so much so that I found myself copying down certain passages to hold on to and remember. I was expecting a more sci-fi/fantasy aspect to the storyline, but enjoyed it nevertheless.

liljables May 01, 2018

I think readers that pick up Exit West expecting either fantasy or a war story will be disappointed (in fact, if you can avoid reading the synopsis, please do). If you approach this novel without those expectations, you'll find a subtle but powerful story about seeking refuge from conflict within a relationship. The doorways in this novel are a small magical concession within an otherwise achingly realistic story about a romance that intensifies quickly under the thumb of war, and two people who have to find themselves - and each other - within the context of an entirely new world.

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