Omar Shahid Hamid is a Pakistani writer and a serving police officer of the Police Service of Pakistan (PSP). He is also the author of “The Prisoner” and a number of other novels. This book is his second book where he has been bold enough to point fingers towards Pakistan’s most perturbing issues— extremism and violence. This book is a refreshing take on the makings of a jihadi. The story chronicles the lives of three best friends; Ausi, Eddy, and Sana. Throughout the novel, we get to see that these three completely different individuals share an extremely intricate relationship, especially in the case of Ausi and Eddy, who communicate in the old-fashioned way i.e. via letters. The difference between the characters is so vast that as Eddy and Sana embark on a journey of receiving higher education in America, Ausi stays behind and evolves into the bone-chilling man now called Sheikh Ahmed Uzair Sufi. He is not only feared by the reader but everyone else along the lines of the book. But, despite the sudden development of characters, the author has stayed true to the nature of typical Pakistani boys by binding Ausi and Eddy to cricket and rekindling old memories, giving a more human characteristic to our Jihadist. Ausi is shrewd beyond belief, diabolically driven, and freely described by the hapless police as one of the most “hardened criminals”. At the beginning of the novel, the captive Sheikh Uzair is transferred from a Hyderabad prison to one in the desolate Nara desert of Khairpur. The reason given to the assistant superintendent of police (ASP), Omar Abbasi, by the city-based inspector, Shahab, is that the Sheikh is so winningly persuasive that the police cannot be trusted to maintain him securely in a less isolated environment as he brainwashes all those nearby him. The narrative is strung together through letters written by Sheikh to his friend Eddy. We piece together the story of a boy who loved cricket and who gradually turned from an innocent student to a member of an ethnic party’s student wing and then into a jihadi. Moreover, It is a gripping tale, painful in many parts, but one that gives a detailed account of the life of the fictional Sheikh Ahmed Uzair Sufi and what motivated him to commit such crimes. It is a well-researched book that offers details that have so far not surfaced with regard to the personality of the real Sheikh. Although The Spinner’s Tale may appeal most to its Pakistani readers, who will be able to relate to virtually every cultural nuance portrayed, it will also interest readers on a more global level, primarily because Hamid is a sound storyteller who takes pains to keep one’s interest sustained quite literally from commencement up to the very last page. Those who approach this book expecting nothing but a relentless series of harsh and frightening encounters will be pleasantly surprised. In aggregate, the novel honors the fictional realm that it sets up by prioritizing the recounting of an entertaining story over and above moral proselytizing. Hamid’s engaging writing and graceful vocabulary ensure that one enjoys the novel in spite of — or perhaps because of — all its disturbing undercurrents and subtly ambiguous dynamics. In many ways, this is the painful story of many educated young Pakistani men from middle-class families who turn to militancy in response to the ills and flaws of Pakistani society or the space created in our country due to corrupt politics and authoritarian governments. It is a story of the alternate system that exists in the country which breeds and shields such militants and considers them heroes. It is also a tale of the magnetic personalities of many such characters, of which Sheikh is possibly the best example. The Spinner’s Tale is the perfect starting point for those wanting to better understand the transformation of our youth into extremists. Omar Shahid Hamid has been bold enough to point fingers at this pathetic issue.