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The Famished Road (The Famished Road Trilogy, 1)

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9780099929307: The Famished Road (The Famished Road Trilogy, 1)
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WINNER OF THE BOOKER PRIZE

‘So long as we are alive, so long as we feel, so long as we love, everything in us is an energy we can use’

The narrator, Azaro, is an abiku, a spirit child, who in the Yoruba tradition of Nigeria exists between life and death. He is born into a world of poverty, ignorance and injustice, but Azaro awakens with a smile on his face. Nearly called back to the land of the dead, he is resurrected. But in their efforts to save their child, Azaro's loving parents are made destitute. The tension between the land of the living, with its violence and political struggles, and the temptations of the carefree kingdom of the spirits propels this latter-day Lazarus's story. Despite belonging to a spirit world made of enchantment, where there is no suffering, Azaro chooses to stay in the land of the Living: to feel it, endure it, know it and love it. This is his story.

‘In a magnificent feat of sustained imaginative writing, Okri spins a tale that is epic and intimate at the same time. The Famished Road rekindled my sense of wonder. It made me, at age 50, look at the world through the wide eyes of a child’ Michael Palin

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Review:

You have never read a novel like this one. Winner of the 1991 Booker Prize for fiction, The Famished Road tells the story of Azaro, a spirit-child. Though spirit-children rarely stay long in the painful world of the living, when Azaro is born he chooses to fight death: "I wanted", he says, "to make happy the bruised face of the woman who would become my mother." Survival in his chaotic African village is a struggle, though. Azaro and his family must contend with hunger, disease and violence, as well as the boy's spirit- companions, who are constantly trying to trick him back into their world. Okri fills his tale with unforgettable images and characters: the bereaved policeman and his wife, who try to adopt Azaro and dress him in their dead son's clothes; the photographer who documents life in the village and displays his pictures in a cabinet by the roadside; Madame Koto, "plump as a mighty fruit", who runs the local bar; the King of the Road, who gets hungrier the more he eats.

At the heart of this hypnotic novel are the mysteries of love and human survival. "It is more difficult to love than to die", says Azaro's father, and indeed, it is love that brings real sharpness to suffering here. As the story moves toward its climax, Azaro must face the consequences of choosing to live, of choosing to walk the road of hunger rather than return to the benign land of spirits. The Famished Road is worth reading for its last line alone, which must be one of the most devastating endings in contemporary literature (but don't skip ahead). -- R. Ellis

Review:

"This is a book to generate apostles. People will be moved and, with stars in their eyes, will pass on the word" (Time Out)

"Okri is incapable of writing a boring sentence. As one startling image follows the next, The Famished Road begins to read like an epic poem that happens to touch down just this side of prose... When I finished the book and went outside, it was as if all the trees of South London had angels sitting in them" (Linda Grant Independent on Sunday)

"In a magnificent feat of sustained imaginative writing, Okri spins a tale that is epic and intimate at the same time. The Famished Road rekindled my sense of wonder. It made me, at age 50, look at the world through the wide eyes of a child" (Michael Palin)

"Overwhelming - just buy it for its beauty" (New Statesman)

"The Famished Road is a masterpiece if one ever existed" (Jay Parini Boston Sunday Globe)

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780385425131: The Famished Road

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ISBN 10: 0385425139 ISBN 13: 9780385425131
Publisher: Anchor Books, 1993
Softcover

9780385424769: The Famished Road

Doubleday, 1992
Hardcover

9780593320259: The Famished Road (Everyman's Library: Modern Classics, 401)

Everym..., 2021
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9780224027014: The Famished Road

Jonath..., 1993
Hardcover

9781841594019: The Famished Road: Ben Okri

Everyman, 2021
Hardcover

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Book Description Paperback. Condition: New. repr. Language: English. Brand new Book. WINNER OF THE BOOKER PRIZE 'So long as we are alive, so long as we feel, so long as we love, everything in us is an energy we can use' The narrator, Azaro, is an abiku, a spirit child, who in the Yoruba tradition of Nigeria exists between life and death. He is born into a world of poverty, ignorance and injustice, but Azaro awakens with a smile on his face. Nearly called back to the land of the dead, he is resurrected. But in their efforts to save their child, Azaro's loving parents are made destitute. The tension between the land of the living, with its violence and political struggles, and the temptations of the carefree kingdom of the spirits propels this latter-day Lazarus's story. Despite belonging to a spirit world made of enchantment, where there is no suffering, Azaro chooses to stay in the land of the Living: to feel it, endure it, know it and love it. This is his story.'In a magnificent feat of sustained imaginative writing, Okri spins a tale that is epic and intimate at the same time. The Famished Road rekindled my sense of wonder. It made me, at age 50, look at the world through the wide eyes of a child' Michael Palin. Seller Inventory # AAZ9780099929307

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