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Book Club: The Quiet American - Graham Greene

Into the intrigue and violence of Indo-China comes Pyle, a young idealistic American sent to promote democracy through a mysterious 'Third Force'. As his naive optimism starts to cause bloodshed, his friend Fowler, a cynical foreign correspondent, finds it hard to stand aside and watch. But even as he intervenes he wonders why: for the sake of politics, or for love?

The Quiet American is an anti-war novel by British author Graham Green, first published in the UK in 1955 and in the United States in 1956. It was adapted into films in 1958 and 2002. The book draws on Greene's experiences as a war correspondent for The Times and Le Figaro in French Indochina in 1951–1954. He was apparently inspired to write The Quiet American in October 1951 while driving back to Saigon from Ben Tre province. He was accompanied by an American aid worker who lectured him about finding a “third force in Vietnam”. Greene spent three years writing the novel, which foreshadowed US involvement in Vietnam long before it became publicly known. The book was the initial reason for Graham Greene being under constant surveillance by US intelligence agencies from the 1950s until his death in 1991, according to documents obtained in 2002 by The Guardian under the US Freedom of Information Act.

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  • Curious C.

    Good meet up.
    Very good actually.
    Thoughtful comments, and interesting conversations.
    Thanks to All.
    Thanks to John, for suggesting that as our next book we read an Iain Banks novel.
    I approved.
    Iain Banks RIP
    (I'm not revealing which book (written by Iain Banks or someone else) we chose for our next read. That's for our Team Leader (hello, Sheila !) to announce. . .

    June 11, 2013

  • John I.

    Thanks Sheila for your organisation and to everyone for the conversation. I look forward to future literary and gastranomic excursions.

    1 · June 11, 2013

  • Ruth

    Very good.

    June 11, 2013

  • Deb C.

    Apologies for missing my first one, had to work late. Had read & enjoyed the book. When is the next one? And what is next book

    June 10, 2013

  • Sue

    Have actually read - and finished the book! Hoping to make this depending on what time I finish work....

    1 · June 9, 2013

  • Saika

    I'm afraid I can't come after all as I'll be abroad. Hope to make the next one

    May 21, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    sorry I can't make this one

    May 20, 2013

  • John I.

    Hi Sheila
    I shall enjoy reading this book and look forward to the discussion.

    April 11, 2013

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