The story is set to both past tense and present time. The frame time is present time when Changez is sitting in the café with the American, and the sub time is past time when the story is about Changez’ past life. The frame story takes place over one day, while the sub story spans over multiple years. Lahore, Pakistan, is the frame setting, while the subsetting is many places like New York, Greece and Chile. The author uses this particular setting because it enhances the contrasts in the story, especially the one between Changez and America.
The inciting incident in the story is Changsz meeting the American and sitting down with him at the café. While the inciting incident in the sub plot is 9/11. The main conflict in the story is Changez’ way to cope with being an outsider in an environment that does not accept him entirely, and the way he experiences multiculturalism.
The main personality traits of the main protagonist are, actually, his very Pakistani way of being. The way that he thinks, acts and speaks are very influenced by his background. A flat character in the story is the American, us as readers do barely know him at all. While Changez and Erica are very much round characters, as we know lots about them. Chagez and Erica are the characters that changes the most, Changez becomes more patriotic to Pakistan, while Erica gets more and more mentally unstable.
The dominant narrative style is first person. Changez is telling his own story, and we get to know what he feels and thinks. The narrator achieves a form of intimacy with his readers by doing it in this particular way. By having another narrative, the story would become flat. One of the biggest reasons to why I like this particular book is the fact that I get to know the feelings and story of a person that has had an extremely interesting life.
As for the theme, I think I could identify a bit with Changez’ feeling of not belonging. But as a white Norwegian female that was a new-born during September 11. 2001, I cannot identify with most of the problems and challenges Changez is facing. The author is exploring the feeling of not fitting in and to suddenly become the enemy because of something that you cannot control.