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The Thing About Thugs

Khair, Tabish

334 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0547731604 / ISBN 13: 9780547731605
Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Boston, 2012
Condition: Very Good Hardcover
From Row By Row Bookshop (Sugar Grove, NC, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

Signed. A tight clean Very Good copy (gift inscription at the front endpaper), in a Near Fine dust jacket with a faint splash-stain visible on the verso only at the lower spine. It is not visible on the front of the jacket or on the covers of the book. Briefly inscribed and signed by the author at the title page. Bookseller Inventory # 038038

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Bibliographic Details

Title: The Thing About Thugs

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Boston

Publication Date: 2012

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:Very Good

Dust Jacket Condition: Near Fine

Signed: Signed by Author(s)

About this title


A subversive, macabre novel of a young Indian man’s misadventures in Victorian London as the city is racked by a series of murders

In a small Bihari village, Captain William T. Meadows finds just the man to further his phrenological research back home: Amir Ali, confessed member of the infamous Thugee cult. With tales of a murderous youth redeemed, Ali gains passage to England, his villainously shaped skull there to be studied. Only Ali knows just how embroidered his story is, so when a killer begins depriving London’s underclass of their heads, suspicion naturally falls on the “thug.” With help from fellow immigrants led by a shrewd Punjabi woman, Ali journeys deep into a hostile city in an attempt to save himself and end the gruesome murders.

Ranging from skull-lined mansions to underground tunnels a ghostly people call home, The Thing about Thugs is a feat of imagination to rival Wilkie Collins or Michael Chabon. Short-listed for the 2010 Man Asian Literary Prize, this sly Victorian role reversal marks the arrival of a compelling new Indian novelist to North America.

From the Back Cover:

Short-listed for the Man Asian Literary Prize, DSC Prize for South Asian Literature, and Hindu Best Fiction Prize

Praise for The Thing about Thugs

“[A] novel full of suspense where the various strands of mystery, human relationships and crime are expertly woven into one absorbing and fast-moving tale. This is a book that deserves to stand the test of time and join the other masterpieces of Victorian London.”—India Today

“If the idea of a Victorian-era tale of adventure appeals to you, featuring thugs, a profusion of misshapen skulls, masked aristocrats, gruesome murders, opium dens and tragic romance—The Thing about Thugs is just that. Yet, at the same time, Khair’s novel offers a profound, even esoteric, meditation on colonial and post-colonial literature, the act of reading, and the complex, reflexive relationship between the colonizer and the colonized.”—DNA India

“Hitchcock would have been proud of the way Khair leads ordinary people to crime (and how others decide to solve them). Equal time is devoted to the villains of the story here. London comes across as a spooky, strange place where anything could happen, and every character we encounter is interesting enough to hold his place.”—Deccan Herald

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