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The Mimic Men

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Overview

A profound novel of cultural displacement, The Mimic Men masterfully evokes a colonial man’s experience in a postcolonial world.

Born of Indian heritage and raised on a British-dependent Caribbean island, Ralph Singh has retired to suburban London, writing his memoirs as a means to impose order on a chaotic existence. His memories lead him to recognize the paradox of his childhood during which he secretly fantasized about a heroic India, yet ...
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The Mimic Men

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Overview

A profound novel of cultural displacement, The Mimic Men masterfully evokes a colonial man’s experience in a postcolonial world.

Born of Indian heritage and raised on a British-dependent Caribbean island, Ralph Singh has retired to suburban London, writing his memoirs as a means to impose order on a chaotic existence. His memories lead him to recognize the paradox of his childhood during which he secretly fantasized about a heroic India, yet changed his name from Ranjit Kripalsingh. As he assesses his short-lived marriage to an ostentatious white woman, Singh realizes what has kept him from becoming a proper Englishman. But it is the return home and his subsequent immersion in the roiling political atmosphere of a newly self-governed nation that ultimately provide Singh with the necessary insight to discover the crux of his disillusionment.
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Editorial Reviews

Alfred Kazin
"He is the most compelling master of social truth that I know of in the contemporary novel." -- The New York Times Book Review
From the Publisher
“A Tolstoyan spirit.... The so-called Third World has produced no more brilliant literary artist.” — John Updike

“Naipaul is a master of English prose.” — J. M. Coetzee, New York Review of Books

“V. S. Naipaul has a substantial claim as a comic writer.... This humor, conducted throughout with the utmost stylistic quietude, is completely original.” — Kingsley Amis, The Spectator

“Mr. Naipaul travels with the artist’s eye and ear and his observations are sharply discerning.” — Evelyn Waugh

“For sheer abundance of talent there can hardly be a writer alive who surpasses V. S. Naipaul. [He is] the world’s writer, a master of language and perception.” — The New York Times Book Review

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780375707179
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 8/14/2001
  • Series: Vintage International Series
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 304
  • Sales rank: 434,838
  • Product dimensions: 5.18 (w) x 7.99 (h) x 0.65 (d)

Meet the Author

V. S. Naipaul
V. S. Naipaul was born in Trinidad in 1932. He has published more than 20 books of fiction and nonfiction, including A House for Mr. Biswas, A Bend in the River, The Enigma of Arrival and An Area of Darkness. He lives in Wiltshire, England. He was knighted in 1990 and received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2001.

Biography

V. S. Naipaul was born in Trinidad in 1932. He went to England on a scholarship in 1950. After four years at University College, Oxford, he began to write, and since then has followed no other profession. He has published more than twenty books of fiction and nonfiction, including Half a Life, A House for Mr. Biswas, A Bend in the River, and a collection of letters, Between Father and Son. In 2001 he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature.

Author biography courtesy of Random House, Inc.

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    1. Also Known As:
      Vidiadhar Surajprasad Naipaul (full name)
    2. Hometown:
      Wiltshire, England
    1. Date of Birth:
      August 17, 1932
    2. Place of Birth:
      Chaguanas, Trinidad
    1. Education:
      Queen's Royal College, Trinidad, 1943-48; B.A., University College, Oxford, 1953

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 45 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(32)

4 Star

(5)

3 Star

(6)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(1)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 45 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 12, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    For fans of Naipaul The Mimic Men will cover familiar territory;

    For fans of Naipaul The Mimic Men will cover familiar territory; isolation, identity, apathy. For newcomers to Naipaul I suggest you start somewhere else. Guerrillas or A Bend in the River would probably be the best starting point. In The Mimic Men we are treated to the first person account of the life of Ralph Singe, former government minister of the small island nation of Isabella, now living in exile. The story is split into three non-linear sections: the first detailing Ralph's college years in London, and his return to Isabella with his English wife; the second dealing with his youth as a privileged, yet minority "Asiatic" on Isabella; the third covering his rise to power in the newly independent nation. As with much of Naipaul's work The Mimic Men is concerned largely with the theme of identity; the grander theme of post-colonial national identity, as well as the smaller, though no less important, theme of personal identity. Ralph (like Naipaul himself) is a man without a homeland. Though I thought this theme was better portrayed in Guerrillas and A Bend in the River, The mimic Men is still a brilliant novel written in Naipaul's trademark brutal and precise prose.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 6, 2013

    Hunter to shadekit

    I caried you to ancient result one.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2013

    Sun

    The stunning fox cub sat alone with her head down.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2013

    Darkness

    The black male wolf pup hobbled in

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2013

    Nexuskit

    Pad in slowly

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2013

    Nightkit and creamkit

    Gtg

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2013

    Silverfwrn

    I wanted to adopt Shadekit. And Toxickit.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2013

    Soulkit

    She teleports in hungry

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2013

    Grassfern to all

    To kits who want to play a game?

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2013

    Toxickit

    Sits alone

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2013

    Firekit

    Paded in with Lightkit and Sonickit. "We have no mommy!" They wail.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2013

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2013

    Moonkit

    Moonkit looked at Icessmoon. "Do you know how long it will be before I get adopted?" She asked.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2013

    Silverkit

    "Bye guys" she said beore padding there

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2013

    Crystalkit

    I do

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2013

    Shrewfoot and co.

    Shrewfoot lets her kits suckle by a hay stack as she falls asleep.<br>
    Ravenkit falls asleep. Crowkit suckles. Viperkit looks around. Rosekit suckles.<br>
    Primkit looks around bored.<br>
    Lostkit pads in and looks around for cats who remember her and her sister crookedkit.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2013

    Scrapkit and fadedkit

    Licks thier lips

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 22, 2013

    Hopekit

    "My daddy.... i miss him.... my mommy left my clan...."

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2013

    May we join

    Im creamfire a female and my brother thunderpaw would like to join.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2013

    Pyro

    "Me."

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 45 Customer Reviews

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