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Kim's life takes a curious twist when he meets a holy man, a lama, who is about to embark on a very mysterious quest: a pilgrimage that will take him across the vast continent, across rivers and up the Himalayas. He wants Kim to accompany him.
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One of the particular pleasures of reading Kim is the full range of emotion, knowledge, and experience that Rudyard Kipling gives his complex hero. Kim O'Hara, the orphaned son of an Irish soldier stationed in India, is neither innocent nor victimized. Raised by an opium-addicted half-caste woman since his equally dissolute father's death, the boy has grown up in the streets of Lahore:
Though he was burned black as any native; though he spoke the vernacular by preference, and his mother-tongue in a clipped uncertain sing-song; though he consorted on terms of perfect equality with the small boys of the bazar; Kim was white--a poor white of the very poorest.From his father and the woman who raised him, Kim has come to believe that a great destiny awaits him. The details, however, are a bit fuzzy, consisting as they do of the woman's addled prophecies of "'a great Red Bull on a green field, and the Colonel riding on his tall horse, yes, and'--dropping into English--'nine hundred devils.'"
In the meantime, Kim amuses himself with intrigues, executing "commissions by night on the crowded housetops for sleek and shiny young men of fashion." His peculiar heritage as a white child gone native, combined with his "love of the game for its own sake," makes him uniquely suited for a bigger game. And when, at last, the long-awaited colonel comes along, Kim is recruited as a spy in Britain's struggle to maintain its colonial grip on India. Kipling was, first and foremost, a man of his time; born and raised in India in the 19th century, he was a fervid supporter of the Raj. Nevertheless, his portrait of India and its people is remarkably sympathetic. Yes, there is the stereotypical Westernized Indian Babu Huree Chander with his atrocious English, but there is also Kim's friend and mentor, the Afghani horse trader Mahub Ali, and the gentle Tibetan lama with whom Kim travels along the Grand Trunk Road. The humanity of his characters consistently belies Kipling's private prejudices, and raises Kim above the mere ripping good yarn to the level of a timeless classic. --Alix WilberFrom the Publisher:
Kim is an orphan, living from hand to mouth in the teeming streets of Lahore. One day he meets a man quite unlike anything in his wide experience, a Tibetan lama on a quest. Kim's life suddenly acquires meaning and purpose as he becomes the lama's guide and protector--his chela. Other forces are at work as Kim is sucked into the intrigue of the Great Game and travels the Grand Trunk Road with his lama.
How Kim and the lama meet their respective destinies on the road and in the mountains of India forms one of the most compelling adventure tales of all time.
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Book Description HarperPress, 2010. Mass-market paperback. Condition: New. A-format paperback. 336 p. Collins Classics. Audience: General/trade. Seller Inventory # Alibris_0003739
Book Description HarperCollins Publishers. Condition: New. pp. 320. Seller Inventory # 5328985
Book Description William Collins. Paperback. Condition: NEW. Very light use, FINE or better, very minor shelf wear. For non-UK markets items of 1.5 kg or more may require an additional shipping charge. Seller Inventory # HBS-00277367-B
Book Description HarperCollins Publishers India, 2010. Softcover. Condition: New. ??I am Kim. I am Kim. And what is Kim?? His soul repeated it again and again.? Set against the backdrop of Britain and Russia?s political struggle in central Asia, Kim, the son of a drunken Irish soldier grows up as a street-wise orphan in the city of Lahore. Upon befriending an aged Tibetan Lama, the playful and spirited Kim journeys with him across India, experiencing the exotic culture, religion and people of the subcontinent. On their travels they come across Kim?s father?s old army regiment. The Colonel quickly spots Kim?s ability to blend into his surroundings and trains him to become a spy for the British Army. As his adventures take him further into the world of secret agents and political intrigue, Kim is torn between his spiritual self and the expectations of his British compatriots. In this exotic tale of mystery, friendship and struggle, Kipling gives a fascinating insight into the British Raj and the volatile age of Imperialism in India. Printed Pages: 320. Seller Inventory # 39693
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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers, 2010. Paperback. Condition: New. UK ed.. Ships with Tracking Number! INTERNATIONAL WORLDWIDE Shipping available. Buy with confidence, excellent customer service!. Seller Inventory # 0007368593n
Book Description HarperCollins Publishers. Paperback. Condition: New. New copy - Usually dispatched within 2 working days. Seller Inventory # B9780007368594