The Attack

“The Attack” by Yasmina Khadra (Algeria)


Readers found the book very powerful, describing it as compelling, fascinating and incredibly well written. The story is told solely through the eyes of Amin, though in his encounters with the different characters from both sides of the conflict, readers felt that they got a balanced view of the situation. They found Amin well portrayed as the attack plunges him into a downward spiral of despair, anger and frustration. Some readers found the secondary characters somewhat weaker in their portrayal and they expressed regret that the motivations of Amin’s wife could only be supposed through his reflections on the why of what had happened. However, they did feel that they got an insight into some reasons that can drive people to such desperate measures. Overall, the book averaged a 9 out of 10, the highest score this season.


Dr Amin Jaafari, a surgeon in a Tel Aviv hospital, struggles to cope with the mangled bodies of victims of a suicide bombing in a downtown restaurant. He is harassed, well meaning, utterly dedicated and professional – and a naturalised Israeli Arab. When the police pin responsibility of the suicide attack on Amin’s wife, he is at first baffled, disbelieving and angry… Read more

Nicola’s Book Club reading list 

Season 9 – “War & Conflict around the World” (Mar – Jun 2009) 

“The Attack” by Yasmina Khadra (Algeria) *
“A Sunday at the Pool in Kigali” by Gil Courtemanche (Canada)
“March” by Geraldine Brooks (Australia)
“The Siege of Krishnapur” by J.G. Farrell (U.K.)

* The book club favourite

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