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Mohsin Hamid, How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising...

Apr 05, 2013
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Mohsin Hamid, How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia

I really, really liked this novel — I’d never heard of Hamid before, but a friend rec’d it on Twitter:


  the book’s structure mimics that of the cheap self-help books sold at sidewalk stands all over South Asia, alongside computer manuals and test-prep textbooks. Each chapter begins with a rule—“Work for Yourself,” “Don’t Fall in Love,” “Be Prepared to Use Violence”—and expertly evolves into a narrative.


The whole thing is written in second person, and none of the characters have names. It might sound gimmicky, but it’s not — the execution is pretty perfect, and really moving.

From chapter six, “Work For Yourself”:


  Like all books, this self-help book is a cocreative project… when you read a book, what you see are black squiggles on pulped wood or, increasingly, dark pixels on a pale screen. To transform these icons into characters and events, you must imagine. And when you imagine, you create. It’s in being read that a book becomes a book, and in each of a million different readings a book becomes one of a million different books…
  
  …Readers don’t work for writers. They work for themselves. Therein, if you’ll excuse the admittedly biased tone, lies the richness of reading.


Recommended.

Mohsin Hamid, How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia

I really, really liked this novel — I’d never heard of Hamid before, but a friend rec’d it on Twitter:

the book’s structure mimics that of the cheap self-help books sold at sidewalk stands all over South Asia, alongside computer manuals and test-prep textbooks. Each chapter begins with a rule—“Work for Yourself,” “Don’t Fall in Love,” “Be Prepared to Use Violence”—and expertly evolves into a narrative.

The whole thing is written in second person, and none of the characters have names. It might sound gimmicky, but it’s not — the execution is pretty perfect, and really moving.

From chapter six, “Work For Yourself”:

Like all books, this self-help book is a cocreative project… when you read a book, what you see are black squiggles on pulped wood or, increasingly, dark pixels on a pale screen. To transform these icons into characters and events, you must imagine. And when you imagine, you create. It’s in being read that a book becomes a book, and in each of a million different readings a book becomes one of a million different books…

…Readers don’t work for writers. They work for themselves. Therein, if you’ll excuse the admittedly biased tone, lies the richness of reading.

Recommended.

79 notes

  1. prettyseahorses reblogged this from austinkleon
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  3. l-live reblogged this from austinkleon and added:
    woop woop gonna pick this up tomorrow for some motivational reading
  4. nothingcouldstaygold reblogged this from yourhandwritingshouldbecomeafont
  5. ridiculouslyours reblogged this from austinkleon and added:
    I NEED TO BUY THIS BOOK.
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