Reviews of Ours Are The Streets

12 January 2011

Read some press reviews of Sunjeev Sahota's debut novel, Ours Are The Streets, and be sure to let us know what you thought of it by leaving a comment.

 

'A controversial book that takes us inside the mind of an ordinary man who decides his vocation is to become a jihad martyr...Imtiaz is vulnerable, angry, funny...the details of his life are entirely believable' Marie Claire

'In impressive debuts of the year...Sunjeev Sahota...audaciously attempts to make us feel sympathy for a suicide bomber' Observer

'Eye-opening and, at times, uncomfortable read. Sahota's debut is engaging and thought-provoking, making it a good bet for the book club.' Image Magazine

'Gripping...a pacey, unsettlingly sympathetic tale...a solid psychological thriller.' Metro

'Brave and brilliant' Yorkshire Post

'Sahota's refusal to play to the gallery and show Imtiaz as a crazed zealot, or some innocent abroad manipulated by sinister terrorists for their own ends, restores a necessary humanity to the figure of the suicide bomber...This makes for uncomfortable reading. Expecting to see in Imtiaz the model of an angry young terrorist, we instead discover a boy who feels more keenly than others the real injustices done to his community - and to the common good. That this community is something that he virtually invents, to fill the vacuum that he has grown up in, makes his dilemma more poignant - and it is this invention that marks Ours Are the Streets not just as a topical novel about "home-grown terrorism" but as a moral work of real intelligence and power.' John Burnside, The Times

'It is refreshing that while Imtiaz is politicised, the book never takes on the angry, pedagogic tone of a newspaper column. It is a sad, nuanced, psychological meditation...that is also evident is Sahota's ability to write lyrically, and with great literary promise.' Arifa Akbar, Independent

'As a study of migrants, the frustrated ambition of the first generation and the generalised alienation of the second, from the "home country" as much as from "home"- this could equally well be titled Ours Are Not the Streets - the novel is very successful...Ours Are the Streets has a sprightly pace, rich characterisation and a distinct voice, and its scenes are tightly controlled. Excruciatingly well-written' Robin Yassin-Kassab, Guardian

WHAT DID YOU THINK OF IT? LET US KNOW IN THE COMMENTS BELOW.

'A compelling tale of a young man's shift from ordinary British teenager to Muslim Radical' Bookseller

'Very assured' Tom Sutcliffe

'[I was] Very impressed by it...remarkably good almost too good...linguistically extremely alive...it reminded my of Clockwork Orange' Kevin Jackson

 

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