Hanif Kureishi, The Buddha of Suburbia (1990)

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The Buddha of Suburbia is a novel written by Hanif Kureishi and first published by Faber & Faber in 1990.



  • Source: Hanif Kureishi. The Buddha of Suburbia. London: Faber and Faber. [1990] 1999.
  • Back cover:
  • 'My name is Karim Ami, and I am an Englishman born and bred, almost...'
  • The hero of Hanif Kureishi's début novel is a dreamy teenager, of indeterminate sexual preference, who is desperate to escape the drear clutches of suburban South London and taste all the forbidden fruits which the 197ßs seem to offer. Karim's own family provide him with some unusual examples of rebellion against the norm - form this philandering, yoga-loving father Haroon to his fiery cousin Jamila, who is being pressed into an arranged marriage. But it is Charlie, the aspirant-rock-star son of Haroon's mistress, who really fires Karim's imagination - not to mention his loins. And it's the unlikely opportunity of a life in the theatre which enables Karim to win the sort of attention he has been craving - albeit with some rude and raucous results.
  • 'One of the best comic novels of growing up, and one of the sharpest satires on race relations in this country, that I've ever read.' Independent on Sunday

Reception and Reviews

  • John Mullan hears readers' responses to Hanif Kureishi's The Buddha of Suburbia
  • with an advertisement for the reading guide from the "Continuum Contemporaries" series