Download River of Smoke Audiobook

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Author: Amitav Ghosh Narrator: Sanjiv Jhaveri Publisher: Brilliance Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Series: The Ibis Trilogy Release Date: September 2011 ISBN: 9781423373858
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The Ibis, loaded to its gunwales with a cargo of indentured servants, is in the grip of a cyclone in the Bay of Bengal; among the dozens flailing for survival are Neel, the pampered raja who has been convicted of embezzlement; Paulette, the French orphan masquerading as a deck-hand; and Deeti, the widowed poppy grower fleeing her homeland with her lover, Kalua. The storm also threatens the clipper ship Anahita, groaning with the largest consignment of opium ever to leave India for Canton. And the Redruth, a nursery ship, carries Frederick “Fitcher” Penrose, a horticulturist determined to track down the priceless treasures of China that are hidden in plain sight: its plants that have the power to heal, or beautify, or intoxicate. All will converge in Canton’s Fanqui-town, or Foreign Enclave: a tumultuous world unto itself where civilizations clash and sometimes fuse. It is a powder keg awaiting a spark to ignite the Opium Wars. Spectacular coincidences, startling reversals of fortune, and tender love stories abound. But this is much more than an irresistible page-turner. The blind quest for money, the primacy of the drug trade, the concealment of base impulses behind the rhetoric of freedom: in River of Smoke the nineteenth and twenty-first centuries converge, and the result is a consuming historical novel with powerful contemporary resonance. Critics praised Sea of Poppies for its vibrant storytelling, antic humor, and rich nar¬rative scope; now Amitav Ghosh continues the epic that has charmed and compelled readers all over the globe. PRAISE FOR River of Smoke “On one level, [River of Smoke] is a remarkable feat of research, bringing alive the hybrid customs of food and dress and the competing philosophies of the period with intimate precision; on another it is a subversive act of empathy, viewing a whole panorama of world history from the ‘wrong’ end of the telescope. The real trick, though, is that it is also fabulously entertaining.” —Tim Adams, The Observer (London) “Eloquent . . . Fascinating . . . [River of Smoke’s] strength lies in how thoroughly Ghosh fills out his research with his novelistic fantasy, seduced by each new situation that presents itself and each new character, so that at their best the scenes read with a sensual freshness as if they were happening now.” —Tessa Hadley, The Guardian “[This] vast book has a Dickensian sweep of characters, high- and low-life intermingling . . . Ghosh conjures up a thrilling sense of place.” —The Economist Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • “No writer in modern India has held a novelistic lamp to the subcontinent’s densely thicketed past as vividly and acutely as Amitav Ghosh…River of Smoke, the second volume of his ambitious Ibis trilogy, is the work of a writer with a historical awareness and an appetite for polyphony that are equal to the immense demands of the material he seeks to illuminate…Evenly written and engaging…The force of Ghosh’s ideas and the beauty of his tableaus of Canton are two of the book’s achievements; the semantic ripples of the variety of dialects he folds into the narration are a third. River of Smoke is both a stirring portrayal of the past and, novelistically, a prescient beacon for the future.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “The period detail is meticulously researched and lovingly described…A monumental tribute to the pain and glory of an earlier era of globalization.”

    Washington Post

  • “Eloquent…Fascinating…[River of Smoke’s] strength lies in how thoroughly Ghosh fills out his research with his novelistic fantasy, seduced by each new situation that presents itself and each new character, so that at their best the scenes read with a sensual freshness as if they were happening now.”

    Guardian (London)

  • “Gripping…Ghosh has made humanely clear the cold cynicism of the Opium Wars.”

    Boston Globe

  • “Ghosh continues to amaze. Few authors since Melville and Joyce have excelled at both rambunctious, rangy linguistic play and deeply and lovingly observed human insight like this.”

    Minneapolis Star-Tribune

  • “Like a wonderful multicolored tapestry Ghosh has woven a story made up of a series of vibrant threads made from a multitude of materials…Masterful…While Ghosh’s descriptive abilities allow us to create intricate portraits of people and locations, it’s his agility with languages which gives River of Smoke an extra level of verisimilitude…River of Smoke is a wonderful mixture of people, places, and story that captures a moment in history like an insect snared in amber.”

    Seattle Post-Intelligencer

  • “On one level, [River of Smoke] is a remarkable feat of research, bringing alive the hybrid customs of food and dress and the competing philosophies of the period with intimate precision; on another it is a subversive act of empathy, viewing a whole panorama of world history from the ‘wrong’ end of the telescope. The real trick, though, is that it is also fabulously entertaining.”

    Observer (London)

  • “[This] vast book has a Dickensian sweep of characters, high- and low-life intermingling…Ghosh conjures up a thrilling sense of place.”

    Economist

  • “Spellbinding and astute, Ghosh continues the nineteenth-century historical saga about the opium trade that he launched with Sea of Poppies. This is an even more fluid and pleasurable tale, however dire its conflicts, and stands firmly on its own, though readers shouldn’t miss the first installment…With one more novel to go, Ghosh’s epic trilogy is on its way to making literary history.”

    Booklist (starred review)

  • “Ghosh triumphs both through the clarity of his style and the sweep of his vision, and he leaves the reader eager for volume three.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • A 2011 Washington Post Notable Book for Fiction
  • A New York Times bestseller
  • A 2011 New York Times Editor’s Choice
  • A 2011 NPR Best Book for Fiction
  • A 2011 Man Asian Literary Prize Finalist

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About the Author

Amitav Ghosh was born in Calcutta in 1956 and raised and educated in Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Iran, Egypt, India, and the United Kingdom, where he received his PhD in social anthropology from Oxford. Acclaimed for fiction, travel writing, and journalism, his books include The Circle of Reason, The Shadow Lines, In an Antique Land, and Dancing in Cambodia. His previous novel, The Glass Palace, was an international bestseller that sold more than a half-million copies in Britain. Recently published there, The Hungry Tide has been sold for translation in twelve foreign countries and is also a bestseller abroad. Ghosh has won France’s Prix Medici Etranger, India’s prestigious Sahitya Akademi Award, the Arthur C. Clarke Award, and the Pushcart Prize. He now divides his time between Harvard University, where he is a visiting professor, and his homes in India and Brooklyn, New York.

About the Narrator

Sanjiv Jhaveri is a New York actor with credits in television, theater, and film. His audiobook resume includes Confessions of a Thug by Philip M. Taylor, The Moral Lives of Animals by Dale Peterson, and the prologue and epilogue of Tiger’s Curse by Colleen Houck.