New York Times bestselling author Mohsin Hamid returns to ALOUD to discuss his latest novel Exit West, a visionary love story that imagines the forces that drive ordinary people from their homes into the uncertain embrace of new lands. Infusing the stark reality of a refugee narrative with the hopeful fantasy of a fairy tale, Exit West follows the journey of two young lovers who flee an unnamed country on the brink of civil war through a magical door that transports them to other places. A profound exploration of immigration and the universal human need to search for a better world, Pakistan-based author Hamid discusses this timely story with Viet Thanh Nguyen, a MacArthur Award-winning novelist who has also written eloquently about the refugee experience.
Mohsin Hamid is the author of four novels, Moth Smoke, The Reluctant Fundamentalist, How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia, and Exit West, and a book of essays, Discontent and Its Civilizations. His writing has been featured on bestseller lists, adapted for the cinema, twice shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, and translated into over thirty-five languages. Born in Lahore, he has spent about half his life there and much of the rest in London, New York, and California.
Viet Thanh Nguyen’s novel The Sympathizer is a New York Times best seller and won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. His other books are Nothing Ever Dies: Vietnam and the Memory of War, finalist for the National Book Award and National Book Critics Circle Award, and Race and Resistance: Literature and Politics in Asian America. He is the Aerol Arnold Chair of English and Professor of English, American Studies and Ethnicity, and Comparative Literature at the University of Southern California. Recently he has been the recipient of fellowships from the Guggenheim and MacArthur foundations, and is a critic-at-large for the Los Angeles Times and a contributing opinion writer for the New York Times.