Biyi Bandele The King's Rifle: A Novel

ISBN 13: 9780061582660

The King's Rifle: A Novel

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9780061582660: The King's Rifle: A Novel

It's winter 1944 and the Second World War is entering its most crucial state. A few months ago fourteen-year-old Ali Banana was a blacksmith's apprentice in his rural hometown in West Africa; now he's trekking through the Burmese jungle. Led by the unforgettably charismatic Sergeant Damisa, the unit has been given orders to go behind enemy lines and wreak havoc. But Japanese snipers lurk behind every tree—and even if the unit manages to escape, infection and disease lie in wait. Homesick and weary, the men of D-Section Thunder Brigade refuse to give up.

Taut and immediate, The King's Rifle is the first novel to depict the experiences of black African soldiers in the Second World War. This is a story of real life battles, of the men who made the legend of the Chindits, the unconventional, quick-strike division of the British Army in India. Brilliantly executed, this vividly realized account details the madness, sacrifice, and dark humor of that war's most vicious battleground. It is also the moving story of a boy trying to live long enough to become a man.

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About the Author:

Biyi Bandele is an award-winning novelist, playwright, and director. He was born in Nigeria and is the son of a veteran of the Burma campaign. The Independent named him one of Africa's fifty greatest artists. He lives in London.

From School Library Journal:

Adult/High School—For advanced teen readers with an appreciation of history, The King's Rifle pulls back the curtain on a theater of World War II long neglected by historians and writers alike, Burma (now called Myanmar). What Bandele reveals is a vivid, brutal, surreal, sometimes funny, tangled world described in language that can be as beautiful and mysterious as the Burmese jungle. This is not a book to be lightly undertaken, as characters have multiple names and complex backgrounds, and speak in dialects. Ali Banana is the Nigerian protagonist who is 17...no, 16...no, 13, actually, as he confesses when pressed by his new commanding officer. He is a boy in the man's world of the Chindits, the rapid-reaction groups formed by the British Army to rattle the Japanese by beating them at their own specialty of jungle warfare. Ali accepts the "invitation" of "Kingi Joji of Ingila"—King George of England—to fight in "Boma." He is told that "wanting to be a man is no sin" and that "killing men does not make a man of you," but in the end, when he must do his comrade one last great favor, he looks like a man of 50. A sophisticated, evocative, and haunting coming-of-age story.—Kate Dunlop Seamans, Colby-Sawyer College, New London, NH
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Book Description Harper Paperbacks, United States, 2009. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Original. Language: English . Brand New Book. It s winter 1944 and the Second World War is entering its most crucial state. A few months ago fourteen-year-old Ali Banana was a blacksmith s apprentice in his rural hometown in West Africa; now he s trekking through the Burmese jungle. Led by the unforgettably charismatic Sergeant Damisa, the unit has been given orders to go behind enemy lines and wreak havoc. But Japanese snipers lurk behind every tree--and even if the unit manages to escape, infection and disease lie in wait. Homesick and weary, the men of D-Section Thunder Brigade refuse to give up. Taut and immediate, The King s Rifle is the first novel to depict the experiences of black African soldiers in the Second World War. This is a story of real life battles, of the men who made the legend of the Chindits, the unconventional, quick-strike division of the British Army in India. Brilliantly executed, this vividly realized account details the madness, sacrifice, and dark humor of that war s most vicious battleground. It is also the moving story of a boy trying to live long enough to become a man. Bookseller Inventory # AAC9780061582660

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Book Description Harper Paperbacks, United States, 2009. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Original. Language: English . Brand New Book. It s winter 1944 and the Second World War is entering its most crucial state. A few months ago fourteen-year-old Ali Banana was a blacksmith s apprentice in his rural hometown in West Africa; now he s trekking through the Burmese jungle. Led by the unforgettably charismatic Sergeant Damisa, the unit has been given orders to go behind enemy lines and wreak havoc. But Japanese snipers lurk behind every tree--and even if the unit manages to escape, infection and disease lie in wait. Homesick and weary, the men of D-Section Thunder Brigade refuse to give up. Taut and immediate, The King s Rifle is the first novel to depict the experiences of black African soldiers in the Second World War. This is a story of real life battles, of the men who made the legend of the Chindits, the unconventional, quick-strike division of the British Army in India. Brilliantly executed, this vividly realized account details the madness, sacrifice, and dark humor of that war s most vicious battleground. It is also the moving story of a boy trying to live long enough to become a man. Bookseller Inventory # AAC9780061582660

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