Fiction Unsworth, Barry Land of Marvels

ISBN 13: 9780091926175

Land of Marvels

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9780091926175: Land of Marvels

In 1914, an English archaeologist called Somerville is fulfilling a lifelong dream: to direct an excavation in the desert of Mesopotamia.

Yet forces beyond his control threaten his work. The Great War is looming, and various interest groups – Turkish, German, English and American - are vying for control over the land and its strategic and economic prizes. The Germans are securing trade routes with a new railway; a major in the Royal Engineers is working undercover, secretly mapping for the British the areas rich in oil; the Bedouin Jehar takes what he can from his new paymasters. The greatest idealist is Somerville, whose intention is to discover and preserve the land’s ancient treasures.

As he weaves these stories together in a powerful narrative, Unsworth provides a brilliant commentary on imperial ambition in the Middle East, and an acute historical perspective on the land that became modern Iraq.

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Review:

'A terrifically entertaining novel.'
-- Kerry Shale, Saturday Review, BBC Radio 4

'His prose is elegant and sure as ever.' -- Spectator

'Lean, elegant, and wise, weaving the doomed ambitions of two fallen empires into a compelling story.' -- Andrea Barrett

'Richly peopled, fast-moving, cleverly plotted, written with economy and elegance, this novel has the satisfying density and sweep of a book twice its length.' -- Sunday Times

'The brilliance of Land of Marvels takes the reader by surprise. What initially appears to be an enjoyable tale ignites into a finely executed moral fable.'
-- Toby Lichtig, TLS

`An intriguing story, elegantly and eloquently told.' -- Peter Ackroyd

`Tensions mount in the desert as spies and assassins join the cast of soldiers and archaeologists, and the story hurtles on towards its fiery denouement.' -- Evening Standard

`Unsworth is the most accomplished of novelists... This is a cunningly put-together novel, in which the development of the plot advancing to an inexorable climax gains enormously from the deliberately leisurely opening.' -- Scotsman

`Unsworth's tale has the slow burn of a professionally laid fuse burning towards an explosive finale.' -- Daily Telegraph

`Up to Unsworth's highest standard ... As well as being a great read, Land of Marvels is an important book.'
-- Valerie Martin

Review:

`Up to Unsworth's highest standard ... As well as being a great read, Land of Marvels is an important book.'

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Barry Unsworth
Published by Hutchinson, London (2009)
ISBN 10: 0091926173 ISBN 13: 9780091926175
New Hardcover First Edition Quantity Available: 1
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Book Description Hutchinson, London, 2009. Hard Cover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. First Edition. A fine unread 1st impression in a fine dustwrapper priced at £18.99 on the inside flap. Bookseller Inventory # 007425

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