The one man who can save us all?
Javid – call him Jay – is a dope dealer living in West London. He goes to mosque on Friday, and he’s just bought his pride and joy – a BMW. He lives with his mum, and life seems sweet.
But his world is about to turn upside-down. Because MI5 have been watching him, and they think he’s just the man they need for a delicate mission.
One thing’s for sure: now he’s a long way East of Hounslow, Jay’s life will never be the same again.
With the edgy humour of Four Lions and the pulse-racing tension of Nomad, East of Hounslow is the first in a series of thriller starring Jay Qasim.
A Muslim dark comedy? Oh yes, please! This is just what I have been crying out for. A fresh quirky contemporary thriller, brimming with British humour. East of Hounslow is marvellous! Totally marvellous.
We meet the funniest Muslim in town. Jay is your typical laddish bloke, who loves his car and is happily settled with his Mum. He isn’t in any rush to grow up. He goes to prayers on Friday, like a good Muslim boy. Then every other day, he deals drugs, has sex and pretty much goes against most of the Islamic faith. His life changes for the better, when MI5 decide he would make a good undercover operative. Jay is thrust into the life of espionage, spying on his local mosque and getting the low down on any radical elements.
The voice of Jay is one of the funniest I’ve heard in a long time. He just sizzles with energy and dry wit. He has the most remarkable way of seeing the world. His comments are spot on. You nod your head and agree with him. Rahman never lets us feel like outsiders, as the reader. We follow Jay and become totally enmeshed in his world. We bond with him and learn to love the scamp. Whether you know a bit about Islam or a lot, you learn. You get an education on the everyday Muslim and on being British and a Muslim, with its cultural stereotypes. We see the Islamic extremists and the balance of the voice of Jay, with his moderate very down to earth partially lapsed approach. Obviously we are all aware of discourses on terror and extremism. Rahman blends this all in expertly, with charm and flair.
Hilarious. Brilliant. Grounded in reality, with some fabulous dialogue. So absorbing, you forget the rest of the world exists. Khurrum Rahman is an author to keep your eye on. Highly recommended.