The Impressionist

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9780141008288: The Impressionist

The Impressionist is Hari Kunzru's sweeping novel of India, empire and identity.

In India, at the birth of the last century, an infant is brought howling into the world, his remarkable paleness marking him out from his brown-skinned fellows. Revered at first, he is later cast out from his wealthy home when his true parentage is revealed. So begins Pran Nath's odyssey of self-discovery - a journey that will take him from the streets of Agra, via the red light district of Bombay, to the brick cloisters of Oxford and beyond - as he struggles to understand who he really is.

'Delectable, sweeping, empire-savaging, audaciously playful . . . Kunzru writes with wry certitude and cinematic precision' The New York Times

'Grand, sprawling, extravagant, lyrical . . . A work so vibrant and richly imagined that you can smell the incense' Esquire

'Epic in scale and rich in historical detail . . . the narrative is deft and swift . . . carrying the reader along effortlessly. This first novel has startling depth, ambition and craftmanship' Time Out

Hari Kunzru is the author of the novels The Impressionist, Transmission, My Revolutions and Gods Without Men, and the story collection Noise. He lives in New York.

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Review:

The anti-hero of The Impressionist, Hari Kunzru's daringly ambitious first novel, is half-English and half-Indian. In the Raj of the 1920s the racial and social divides are enormous but Pran Nath is able to bridge them, crossing from one side to another in a series of reinventions of his own personality. He begins as the spoilt child of an Indian lawyer but circumstances thrust him out of his pampered adolescence into the teeming and dangerous life of the streets. After a bewildering period as one of the pawns in Machiavellian political and sexual scheming at the decadent court of a minor Maharajah, he escapes to Bombay. There he is taken up by a half-demented Scottish missionary and his wife but prefers to slope off to the city's red light district whenever he can. During a time of riot and bloodshed the chance of recreating himself as an English schoolboy, destined for public school and Oxford, presents itself and he takes it. Even this is not to be his final transformation, however.

In some ways Kunzru is almost too ambitious. There is so much crammed into the pages of The Impressionist that some of it, almost inevitably, doesn't work as well as it might. However, as the shape-shifting Pran Nath moves from one identity to another, knockabout farce mixes with satire, social comedy with parody. And, beneath the comic exuberance and linguistic invention, there is an intelligent and occasionally moving examination of notions of self, identity and what it means to belong to a class or society. --Nick Rennison

Review:

"Riveting stuff, beautifully written... Superb" THE TIMES

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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 2003. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 194 x 124 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. An adventure brimming with colour, energy and humour -- the acclaimed debut novel from the author of White Tears This is the extraordinary story of a child conceived in a wild monsoon night, a boy destined to be an outsider, a man with many names and no name. Born into luxury but disinherited and cast out onto the streets of Agra, Pran Nath must become a chameleon. Chasing his fortune, he will travel from the red light district of Bombay to the green lawns of England to the unmapped African wilderness. He will play many different roles -- a young prize in a brothel, the adopted son of Scottish missionaries, the impeccably educated young Englishman headed for Oxford -- in order to find the role that will finally fit. Daring and riotously inventive, The Impressionist is an odyssey of self-discovery: a tale of the many lives one man can live and of the universal search for true identity. Bookseller Inventory # APG9780141008288

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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 2003. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 194 x 124 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. An adventure brimming with colour, energy and humour -- the acclaimed debut novel from the author of White Tears This is the extraordinary story of a child conceived in a wild monsoon night, a boy destined to be an outsider, a man with many names and no name. Born into luxury but disinherited and cast out onto the streets of Agra, Pran Nath must become a chameleon. Chasing his fortune, he will travel from the red light district of Bombay to the green lawns of England to the unmapped African wilderness. He will play many different roles -- a young prize in a brothel, the adopted son of Scottish missionaries, the impeccably educated young Englishman headed for Oxford -- in order to find the role that will finally fit. Daring and riotously inventive, The Impressionist is an odyssey of self-discovery: a tale of the many lives one man can live and of the universal search for true identity. Bookseller Inventory # APG9780141008288

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Book Description 2003. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 1st. 129mm x 198mm x 30mm. Paperback. In India, at the birth of the last century, an infant is brought howling into the world, his remarkable paleness marking him out from his brown-skinned fellows. Revered at first, he is lat.Shipping may be from multiple locations in the US or from the UK, depending on stock availability. 496 pages. 0.327. Bookseller Inventory # 9780141008288

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Book Description Paperback. Book Condition: New. Not Signed; An adventure brimming with colour, energy and humour -- the acclaimed debut novel from the author of White Tears This is the extraordinary story of a child conceived in a wild monsoon night, a boy destined to be an outsider, a man with many names and no name. Born into luxury but disinherited and. book. Bookseller Inventory # ria9780141008288_rkm

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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd. Paperback. Book Condition: new. BRAND NEW, The Impressionist, Hari Kunzru, The Impressionist is Hari Kunzru's sweeping novel of India, empire and identity. In India, at the birth of the last century, an infant is brought howling into the world, his remarkable paleness marking him out from his brown-skinned fellows. Revered at first, he is later cast out from his wealthy home when his true parentage is revealed. So begins Pran Nath's odyssey of self-discovery - a journey that will take him from the streets of Agra, via the red light district of Bombay, to the brick cloisters of Oxford and beyond - as he struggles to understand who he really is. "Delectable, sweeping, empire-savaging, audaciously playful.Kunzru writes with wry certitude and cinematic precision". (The New York Times). "Grand, sprawling, extravagant, lyrical.A work so vibrant and richly imagined that you can smell the incense". (Esquire). "Epic in scale and rich in historical detail .the narrative is deft and swift .carrying the reader along effortlessly. This first novel has startling depth, ambition and craftmanship". (Time Out). Hari Kunzru is the author of the novels The Impressionist, Transmission, My Revolutions and Gods Without Men, and the story collection Noise. He lives in New York. Bookseller Inventory # B9780141008288

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Book Description 2003-04-03., 2003. Book Condition: New. Penguin. New Ed. Paperback. Book: GOOD. 496pp. . Bookseller Inventory # NF-1412798

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