Fiction V.S. Naipaul A Bend in the River

ISBN 13: 9780394743141

A Bend in the River

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9780394743141: A Bend in the River

'Brilliant and terrifying' - "Observer". I had to be the man who was doing well and more than well, the man whose drab shop concealed some bigger operation that made millions. I had to be the man who had planned it all, who had come to the destroyed town at the bend in the river because he had foreseen the rich future. 'Salim, the narrator, is a young man from an Indian family of traders long resident on the coast of Central Africa. Salim has left the coast to make his way in the interior, there to take on a small trading shop of this and that, sundries, sold to the natives. The place is 'a bend in the river'; it is Africa. The time is post-colonial, the time of Independence. The Europeans have withdrawn or been forced to withdraw and the scene is one of chaos, violent change, warring tribes, ignorance, isolation, poverty and a lack of preparation for the modern world they have entered, or partially assumed as a sort of decoration. It is a story of historical upheaval and social breakdown. Naipaul has fashioned a work of intense imaginative force. It is a haunting creation, rich with incident and human bafflement, played out in an immense detail of landscape rendered with a poignant brilliance' - Elizabeth Hardwick. 'Always a master of fictional landscape, Naipaul here shows, in his variety of human examples and in his search for underlying social causes, a Tolstoyan spirit' - John Updike.

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From the Inside Flap:

First published in 1979, A Bend in the River is a profound and richly observed novel of the politics and society of postcolonial Africa. Salim, a young Indian man, moves to a town on a bend in the river of a recently independent nation. As Salim strives to establish his business, he comes to be closely involved with the fluid and dangerous politics of the newly created state, the remnants of the old regime clashing inevitably with the new. "Naipaul's novels are about the struggle for existence in a world still colonial despite the breakup of the old Western empires," wrote Alfred Kazin.
   A Bend in the River is demonstration of V. S. Naipaul's status as one of the world's best novelists. The New York Times Book Review noted: "For sheer abundance of talent there can hardly be a writer alive who surpasses V. S. Naipaul." Elizabeth Hardwick, who has provided a
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see the inside of the jacketnew Introduction for this Modern Library edition, has said, "The sweep of Naipaul's imagination, the brilliant fictional frame that expresses it, are in my view without equal today."

From the Back Cover:

"For sheer abundance of talent, there ca hardly be a writer alive who surpasses V.S. Naipaul." —The New York Times Book Review

"Confirms Naipaul's position as one of the best writers now at work." —Walter Clemons, Newsweek

"The sweep of Naipaul's imagination, the brilliant fictional frame that expresses it, are in my view without equal today." —Elizabeth Hardwick

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