How To Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia, by Mohsin Hamid
So, I probably never would have heard about let alone picked up this book with the Tournament of Books. And that is exactly why I love the tournament so much, because this is a fantastic book.
It’s written in second person. The main characters are not named. It’s written as a kind of self-help manual. Each chapter starts out with an instruction, a step on the road to becoming filthy rich – “Don’t Fall in Love,” “Learn from a Master,” “Work for Yourself,” etc. And then the self-help portion shifts flawlessly to narrative. Admittedly, it sounds unemotional, but it isn’t. I was unduly invested in the boy and then the man’s journey from peasant village to poor boy in the city, from an enterprising young adult to a wealthy man. It’s also a love story, of sorts.
I could not put it down. It was a book that I thought about during the hours in which I had to put it down to go about the business of life. The writing is magnificent. Hamid often managed to deftly capture sentiments I had felt before but could not adequately describe. Here is my favorite:
Your mother is quiet throughout, as she tends to be in her interactions with medical professionals. They are unusual in their capacity to cause this behavior in her. Their power to kill in the future by uttering mysterious words today robs her of her confidence and she, a customarily confident woman, resents this. She longs to resist them but has no idea how to do so.
In sum, I’d highly recommend this one. And I’m definitely in its cheering section for the Tournament. Cheers.
Other related posts:
Finalists for the 2014 Tournament of Books
Find Mohsin Hamid on the interwebs: Website