Cambridge

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Overview

One of England's most widely acclaimed young novelists adopts two eerily convincing narrative voices and juxtaposes their stories to devastating effect in this mesmerizing portrait of slavery. Cambridge is a devoutly Christian slave in the West Indies whose sense of justice is both profound and self-destructive, while Emily is a morally-blind, genteel Englishwoman.

One of England's most widely acclaimed young novelists adopts two eerily convincing narrative voices ...

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Overview

One of England's most widely acclaimed young novelists adopts two eerily convincing narrative voices and juxtaposes their stories to devastating effect in this mesmerizing portrait of slavery. Cambridge is a devoutly Christian slave in the West Indies whose sense of justice is both profound and self-destructive, while Emily is a morally-blind, genteel Englishwoman.

One of England's most widely acclaimed young novelists adopts two eerily convincing narrative voices and juxtaposes their stories to devastating effect in this mesmerizing portrait of slavery. Cambridge is a devoutly Christian slave in the West Indies whose sense of justice is both profound and self-destructive, while Emily is a morally-blind, genteel Englishwoman.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Phillips welds an Englishwoman's journal to testimonials from a slave to form this superbly achieved novel about a 19th-century sugar plantation in the West Indies. Author tour. Feb.
Library Journal
This virtuoso exercise in narrative voice may remind some of Kazuo Ishiguro's Remains of the Day LJ 10/1/89. Emily Cartwright is sent to the British West Indies to survey her father's sugar plantation, where she examines her ambiguous feelings about slavery. Phillips nimbly assumes the voice of a 19th-century British woman; like Ishiguro, he explores all the subtleties inherent in having such a narrator speak. But the story loses some of its emotional grip when, in Section II, Phillips introduces the voice of the slave Cambridge. Attempts to link the experience of the two characters--or to show how fortune condemns each to their separate misery--cause the narrative to lose steam. Still, the overall effect is powerful. Phillips details both the grimness and lushness of island life. Without moralizing, he shows how this unnatural social structure is bound to collapse. Recommended for public libraries.-- Rita Ciresi, Pennsylvania State Univ., University Park
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780099520566
  • Publisher: Knopf Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 5/28/2008
  • Pages: 184
  • Product dimensions: 5.10 (w) x 7.70 (h) x 0.60 (d)

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