Jihadi: A Love Story by Yusuf Toropov

 Jihadi: A Love Story is a psychological thriller which I found to be an extremely challenging read. I was reading it at the time that the atrocities in Brussels were occurring and I found it difficult to engage with the subject matter. It is a complicated plot line which cannot easily be skimmed over. It makes the reader evaluate the truth and there are many twists and turns as the story develops.

    It begins in a secret terrorist prison cell where a former intelligence agent is being held and has written his memoir. This memoir is being assessed by a psychologist who annotates the text from her own perspective. The trouble is, it is very difficult to know who is to be trusted. You can't make assumptions about any part of it. Extremists are on both sides. 

    Told through the lives of a range of characters, the story poses questions as to the nature of terrorism, religious fervour, leadership and fanaticism. Moving backwards and forwards in time, different stories are woven together. On  Safen Maken Findley's blog, the author, Yusuf Toropov has posted a guest post on the writing of Jihadi. You can read it here.

 Thanks to Orenda Books for a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.


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