The Sympathizer: A Novel (pulitzer Prize For Fiction)

The Sympathizer: A Novel (pulitzer Prize For Fiction)

Paperback | April 22, 2016

byViet Thanh Nguyen

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The winner of the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, as well as six other awards,The Sympathizer is the breakthrough novel of the year. With the pace and suspense of a thriller and prose that has been compared to Graham Greene and Saul Bellow,The Sympathizer is a sweeping epic of love and betrayal. The narrator, a communist double agent, is a 'man of two minds,' a half-French, half-Vietnamese army captain who arranges to come to America after the Fall of Saigon, and while building a new life with other Vietnamese refugees in Los Angeles is secretly reporting back to his communist superiors in Vietnam.The Sympathizer is a blistering exploration of identity and America, a gripping espionage novel, and a powerful story of love and friendship.

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The Sympathizer: A Novel (pulitzer Prize For Fiction)

Paperback | April 22, 2016
In stock online Available in stores
$19.58 online $22.95 (save 14%)

From the Publisher

The winner of the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, as well as six other awards,The Sympathizer is the breakthrough novel of the year. With the pace and suspense of a thriller and prose that has been compared to Graham Greene and Saul Bellow,The Sympathizer is a sweeping epic of love and betrayal. The narrator, a communist double agent,...

Viet Thanh Nguyen was born in Vietnam and raised in America. He is the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of the academic booksRace and Resistance andNothing Ever Dies. He is a cultural critic-at-large for theLos Angeles Times and teaches English and American Studies and Ethnicity at the University of Southern California. He lives in Los An...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:384 pages, 8.3 × 8.19 × 1.18 inPublished:April 22, 2016Publisher:Grove/AtlanticLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0802124941

ISBN - 13:9780802124944

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Editorial Reviews

Praise forThe Sympathizer:Winner of the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for FictionWinner of the 2016 Edgar Award for Best First NovelWinner of the 2016 Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in FictionWinner of the 2016 Dayton Literary Peace Prize for FictionWinner of the 2015 Center for Fiction First Novel PrizeWinner of the 2015-2016 Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature (Adult Fiction)Winner of the 2016 California Book Award for First FictionFinalist for the 2016 PEN/Faulkner AwardFinalist for the 2016 PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut FictionFinalist for the 2016 Medici Book Club PrizeFinalist for the 2015Los Angeles Times Book Prize (Mystery/Thriller)Finalist for the 2016 ABA Indies Choice/E.B. White Read-Aloud Award (Book of the Year, Adult Fiction)Named a Best Book of the Year on more than twenty lists, including theNew York Times Book Review,Wall Street Journal, andWashington Post'A layered immigrant tale told in the wry, confessional voice of a 'man of two minds'-and two countries, Vietnam and the United States.'-Pulitzer Prize Citation'[A] remarkable debut novel . . . [Nguyen] brings a distinctive perspective to the war and its aftermath. His book fills a void in the literature, giving voice to the previously voiceless . . . The nameless protagonist-narrator, a memorable character despite his anonymity, is an Americanized Vietnamese with a divided heart and mind. Nguyen's skill in portraying this sort of ambivalent personality compares favorably with masters like Conrad, Greene, and le Carre. . . . Both thriller and social satire. . . . In its final chapters,The Sympathizer becomes an absurdist tour de force that might have been written by a Kafka or Genet.'-Philip Caputo,New York Times Book Review (cover review)'This is more than a fresh perspective on a familiar subject. [The Sympathizer] is intelligent, relentlessly paced and savagely funny . . . The voice of the double-agent narrator, caustic yet disarmingly honest, etches itself on the memory.'-Wall Street Journal (WSJ's Best Books of 2015)'Extraordinary . . . Surely a new classic of war fiction. . . . [Nguyen] has wrapped a cerebral thriller around a desperate expat story that confronts the existential dilemmas of our age. . . . Laced with insight on the ways nonwhite people are rendered invisible in the propaganda that passes for our pop culture. . . . I haven't read anything since Orwell'sNineteen Eighty-Four that illustrates so palpably how a patient tyrant, unmoored from all humane constraint, can reduce a man's mind to liquid.'-Washington Post'The great achievement ofThe Sympathizer is that it gives the Vietnamese a voice and demands that we pay attention. Until now, it's been largely a one-sided conversation-or at least that's how it seems in American popular culture . . . We've never had a story quite like this one before. . . . [Nguyen] has a great deal to say and a knowing, playful, deeply intelligent voice . . . There are so many passages to admire. Mr. Nguyen is a master of the telling ironic phrase and the biting detail, and the book pulses with Catch-22-style absurdities.'-New York Times'Beautifully written and meaty . . . really compelling. I had that kid-like feeling of being inside the book.'-Claire Messud,Boston Globe'This debut is a page-turner (read: everybody will finish) that makes you reconsider the Vietnam War (read: everyone will have an opinion) . . . Nguyen's darkly comic novel offers a point of view about American culture that we've rarely seen.' (Oprah's Book Club Suggestions)'The novel's best parts are painful, hilarious exposures of white tone-deafness . . . [the] satire is delicious.'-New Yorker'The Sympathizer reads as part literary historical fiction, part espionage thriller and part satire. American perceptions of Asians serve as some of the book's most deliciously tart commentary . . . Nguyen knows of what he writes.'-Los Angeles Times'Sparkling and audacious . . . Unique and startling . . . Nguyen's prose is often like a feverish, frenzied dream, a profuse and lively stream of images sparking off the page. . . . Nguyen can be wickedly funny. . . . [His] narrator has an incisive take on Asian-American history and what it means to be a nonwhite American. . . . this remarkable, rollicking read by a Vietnamese immigrant heralds an exciting new voice in American literature.'-Seattle Times'Stunned, amazed, impressed. [The Sympathizer is] so skillfully and brilliantly executed that I cannot believe this is a first novel. (I should add jealous to my emotions.) Upends our notions of the Vietnam novel.'-Chicago Tribune'A very special, important, brilliant novel . . . Amazing . . . I don't say brilliant about a lot of books, but this is a brilliant book . . . A fabulous book . . . that everyone should read.'-Nancy Pearl,'Dazzling . . . I've read scads of Vietnam War books, butThe Sympathizer has an exciting quality I haven't encountered . . . A fascinating exploration of personal identity, cultural identity, and what it means to sympathize with two sides at once.'-John Powers,Fresh Air, NPR (Books I Wish I'd Reviewed)'Powerful and evocative . . . Gripping.'-San Francisco Chronicle'Welcome a unique new voice to the literary chorus. . . . [The Sympathizer] is, among other things, a character-driven thriller, a political satire, and a biting historical account of colonization and revolution. It dazzles on all fronts.'-Cleveland Plain Dealer'[Nguyen's] books perform an optic tilt about Vietnam and what America did there as profound as Ralph Ellison'sInvisible Man and Toni Morrison'sBeloved were to the legacy of racism and slavery.'-John Freeman,Literary Hub'For those who have been waiting for the great Vietnamese American Vietnam War novel, this is it. More to the point: This is a great American Vietnam War novel. . . . It is the last word (I hope) on the horrors of the Vietnamese re-education camps that our allies were sentenced to when we left them swinging in the wind.'-Vietnam Veterans of America'Magisterial. A disturbing, fascinating and darkly comic take on the fall of Saigon and its aftermath, and a powerful examination of guilt and betrayal.The Sympathizer is destined to become a classic and redefine the way we think about the Vietnam War and what it means to win and to lose.'-T.C. Boyle'Trapped in endless civil war, 'the man who has two minds' tortures and is tortured as he tries to meld the halves of his country and of himself. Viet Thanh Nguyen accomplishes this integration in a magnificent feat of storytelling.The Sympathizer is a novel of literary, historical, and political importance.'-Maxine Hong Kingston, author ofThe Fifth Book of Peace'It is a strong, strange and liberating joy to read this book, feeling with each page that a broken world is being knitted back together, once again whole and complete. As far as I am concerned, Viet Thanh Nguyen'sThe Sympathizer-both a great American novel and a great Vietnamese novel-will close the shelf on the literature of the Vietnam War.'-Bob Shacochis, author ofThe Woman Who Lost Her Soul'Read this novel with care; it is easy to read, wry, ironic, wise, and captivating, but it could change not only your outlook on the Vietnam War, but your outlook on what you believe about politics and ideology in general. It does what the best of literature does, expands your consciousness beyond the limitations of your body and individual circumstances.'-Karl Marlantes, author ofMatterhorn andWhat It Is Like to Go to War'Not only does Viet Thanh Nguyen bring a rare and authentic voice to the body of American literature generated by the Vietnam War, he has created a book that transcends history and politics and nationality and speaks to the enduring theme of literature: the universal quest for self, for identity.The Sympathizer is a stellar debut by a writer of depth and skill.'-Robert Olen Butler, Pulitzer Prize-winning author ofA Good Scent from a Strange Mountain'The Sympathizer is a remarkable and brilliant book. By turns harrowing, and cut through by shards of unexpected and telling humor, this novel gives us the conflict in Vietnam, and its aftermath, in a way that is deeply truthful, and vitally important.'-Vincent Lam, author ofBloodletting and Miraculous Cures andThe Headmaster's Wager'I think I'd have to go all the way back to Nabokov's Humbert Humbert to find the last narrative voice that so completely conked me over the head and took me prisoner. Nguyen and his unnamed protagonist certainly have made a name for themselves with one of the smartest, darkest, funniest books you'll read this year.'-David Abrams, author ofFobbit'Audaciously and vividly imagined. A compelling read.'-Andrew X. Pham, author ofCatfish and Mandala'Nguyen's cross-grained protagonist exposes the hidden costs in both countries of America's tragic Asian misadventure. Nguyen's probing literary art illuminates how Americans failed in their political and military attempt to remake Vietnam-but then succeeded spectacularly in shrouding their failure in Hollywood distortions. Compelling-and profoundly unsettling.'-Booklist (starred review)'A closely written novel of after-the-war Vietnam, when all that was solid melted into air. As Graham Greene and Robert Stone have taught us, on the streets of Saigon, nothing is as it seems. . . . Think Alan Furst meets Elmore Leonard, and you'll capture Nguyen at his most surreal . . . Both chilling and funny, and a worthy addition to the library of first-rate novels about the Vietnam War.'-Kirkus Reviews (starred review)'[An] astonishing first novel . . . Nguyen's novel enlivens debate about history and human nature, and his narrator has a poignant often mindful voice.'-Publishers Weekly (starred, boxed review)'Breathtakingly cynical, the novel has its hilarious moments . . . Ultimately a meditation on war, political movements, America's imperialist role, the CIA, torture, loyalty, and one's personal identity, this is a powerful, thought-provoking work. It's hard to believe this effort . . . is a debut. This is right up there with Denis Johnson'sTree of Smoke.-Library Journal (starred review)'I cannot remember the last time I read a novel whose protagonist I liked so much. Smart, funny, and self-critical, with a keen sense of when to let a story speak for itself (and when to gloss it with commentary). He's someone I would like to have a beer with, despite the fact that his life's work is the betrayal of his friends. . . . [Nguyen] proves a gifted and bold satirist.'-Barnes & Noble Review'Riveting . . .The Sympathizer is not only a masterly espionage novel, but also a seminal work of 21st century American fiction. Giving voice to the Vietnamese experience in the United States, Nguyen offers profound insights into the legacy of war and the politically and racially charged atmosphere of the 1970s.'-BookReporter'[A] shimmering debut novel . . . Leaping with lyrical verve, each page turns to a unique and hauntingly familiar voice that refuses to let us forget what people are capable of doing to each other.'-Asian American Writers' Workshop'Arresting . . . One of the best pieces of fiction about the Vietnam war-and by a Vietnamese. . . . Stunning . . . Could it be that Nguyen has captured the shape of the devolution of war itself, from grand ambition to human ruin? . . . One of the finest novels of the Vietnam War published in recent years.'-The Daily Beast'[An] intriguing confessional . . . [a] tour de force . . . So taken was I by the first quarter of the book that I believed myself to be reading an actual confession . . . The character himself . . . and the quality of the narration seized me, leaving me almost breathless in my pursuit of an ending.'-Sewanee Review'Tremendously funny, with a demanding verbal texture . . . Both tender and a bit of a romp, the book reminded me of how big books can be.'-Guardian (Best Books of 2015)'Astounding . . . [The unnamed narrator] will be compared to the morally exhausted spies, intelligence officers and double agents of Joseph Conrad, Graham Greene, and John le Carre.'-Toronto Star "