Winner of the Pulitzer Prize

BuzzFeed News | Best Books of 2021

Tomi Obaro reviews The Committed for BuzzFeed News’ Best Books of 2021.

In 2015’s The Sympathizer, Nguyen’s Pulitzer Prize–winning debut novel, an unnamed spy documents the hypocrisies of the Vietnam War from his unique vantage point as a half-French, half-Vietnamese double agent. He’s embedded in a South Vietnamese operation based in California, while secretly working on behalf of the Communist North Vietnamese. After surviving torture in a reeducation camp, the spy sets sail for France on a refugee boat with Bon, one of his best friends and fellow South Vietnamese soldier, who doesn’t know about the spy’s Communist past.

And that’s where The Committed picks up, as our unnamed protagonist joins Bon in a seedy drug-selling operation. In his spare time, he reads theorists like Fanon. Part action-packed thriller, part trenchant critique on myriad evils of imperialism, The Committed is an incisive and thought-provoking read. —T.O.


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