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2 Beaverton Literature- A to Z

Small Island

by

Small Island Cover

ISBN13: 9780312424671
ISBN10: 0312424671
Condition: Standard
All Product Details

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Awards

2004 Whitbread Book of the Year
2004 Orange Prize for Fiction
2005 Commonwealth Writers' Prize

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Hortense Joseph arrives in London from Jamaica in 1948 with her life in her suitcase, her heart broken, her resolve intact. Her husband, Gilbert Joseph, returns from the war expecting to be received as a hero, but finds his status as a black man in Britain to be second class. His white landlady, Queenie, raised as a farmer's daughter, befriends Gilbert, and later Hortense, with innocence and courage, until the unexpected arrival of her husband, Bernard, who returns from combat with issues of his own to resolve.

Told in these four voices, Small Island is a courageous novel of tender emotion and sparkling wit, of crossings taken and passages lost, of shattering compassion and of reckless optimism in the face of insurmountable barriers — in short, an encapsulation of that most American of experiences: the immigrant's life.

Review:

"After winning the Orange Prize and the Whitbread Book of the Year Award, Levy's captivating fourth novel sweeps into a U.S. edition with much-deserved literary fanfare. Set mainly in the British Empire of 1948, this story of emigration, loss and love follows four characters — two Jamaicans and two Britons — as they struggle to find peace in postwar England. After serving in the RAF, Jamaican Gilbert Joseph finds life in his native country has become too small for him. But in order to return to England, he must marry Hortense Roberts — she's got enough money for his passage — and then set up house for them in London. The pair move in with Queenie Bligh, whose husband, Bernard, hasn't returned from his wartime post in India. But when does Bernard turn up, he is not pleased to find black immigrants living in his house. This deceptively simple plot poises the characters over a yawning abyss of colonialism, racism, war and the everyday pain that people inflict on one another. Levy allows readers to see events from each of the four character's' point of view, lightly demonstrating both the subjectivity of truth and the rationalizing lies that people tell themselves when they are doing wrong. None of the characters is perfectly sympathetic, but all are achingly human. When Gilbert realizes that his pride in the British Empire is not reciprocated, he wonders, 'How come England did not know me?' His question haunts the story as it moves back and forth in time and space to show how the people of two small islands become inextricably bound together. Agent, David Grossman." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"Entrancing and disturbing at the same time, theliterary equivalent of a switch-back ride." The Sunday Times

Review:

"It's a magnificent achievement — and — the best compliment one novelist can give another, made me jealous. Congratulations." Linda Grant

Review:

"A work of great imaginative power which ranks alongside Sam Selvon's The Lonely Londoners, George Lamming's The Emigrants, and Caryl Phillips' The Final Passage in dealing with the experience of migration. I hope that this novel will get the critical attention it deserves." Linton Kwesi Johnson

Review:

"I enjoyed Small Island enormously. A wonderful insight into a little understood period." Joan Bakewell

Review:

"Small Island is a great read, delivering the sort of pleasure which has been the stock-in-trade of a long line of English novelists. It's honest, skilful, thoughtful and important. This is Andrea Levy's big book." The Guardian

Review:

"It's an engrossing read — slyly funny, passionately angry and wholly involving." The Daily Mail

Review:

"Small Island is never less than finely-written, delicately and often comically observed, and impressively rich in detail and little nuggets of stories." The Evening Standard

Review:

"Andrea Levy has written one of those rare fictions that tells you things you didn't know but feel you should have known." The Sunday Herald, Scotland

Review:

"Andrea Levy gives us a new urgent take on our past." Vogue

Review:

"Levy has a superb ear for dialogue that captures the nuances and quirks of speech and achieves the remarkable feat of both distilling and bringing into sharp relief the weighty themes of race, war, colonialism, migration and love." The New Zealand Herald

Review:

"Small Island is a triumph of poise, organisation and deep, deep character — the sort of work that can only be achieved by an experienced novelist, comfortable with her powers and confident in her technique. Ugliness and struggle, humour and forbearance, this is the myriad-voiced sound of a nation in transformation." The Age, Australia

Synopsis:

Small Island has sold a million copies worldwide. This new edition of the award-winning novel ties in with the BBC /Masterpiece theatre adaptation, and the publication of her new novel The Long Song (FSG)

Synopsis:

Winner of the 2004 Orange Prize for Fiction

A Picador Original Trade Paperback

Hortense Joseph arrives in London from Jamaica in 1948 with her life in her suitcase, her heart broken, her resolve intact. Her husband, Gilbert Joseph, returns from the war expecting to be received as a hero, but finds his status as a black man in Britain to be second class. His white landlady, Queenie, raised as a farmer's daughter, befriends Gilbert, and later Hortense, with innocence and courage, until the unexpected arrival of her husband, Bernard, who returns from combat with issues of his own to resolve.

Told in these four voices, Small Island is a courageous novel of tender emotion and sparkling wit, of crossings taken and passages lost, of shattering compassion and of reckless optimism in the face of insurmountable barriers---in short, an encapsulation of that most American of experiences: the immigrant's life.

Born in 1956 to Jamaican parents, Andrea Levy is the author of three previous novels and has received a British Arts Council Writers Award in addition to the Orange Prize and Whitbread distinctions. She lives and works in London.

Synopsis:

Small Island is an international bestseller.  It won the Orange Prize for Fiction, The Orange Prize for Fiction: Best of the Best, The Whitbread Novel Award, The Whitbread Book of the Year Award, and the Commonwealth Writers' Prize.  It has now been adapted for the screen as a coproduction of the BBC and Masterpiece/WGBH Boston.

Hortense Joseph arrives in London from Jamaica in 1948 with her life in her suitcase, her heart broken, her resolve intact. Her husband, Gilbert Joseph, returns from the war expecting to be received as a hero, but finds his status as a black man in Britain to be second class. His white landlady, Queenie, raised as a farmer's daughter, befriends Gilbert, and later Hortense, with innocence and courage, until the unexpected arrival of her husband, Bernard, who returns from combat with issues of his own to resolve.

 
Told in these four voices, Small Island is a courageous novel of tender emotion and sparkling wit, of crossings taken and passages lost, of shattering compassion and of reckless optimism in the face of insurmountable barriers---in short, an encapsulation of that most American of experiences: the immigrant's life.

About the Author

Born in 1956 to Jamaican parents, Andrea Levy is the author of three previous novels and has received a British Arts Council Writers Award in addition to the Orange Prize and Whitbread distinctions. She lives and works in London.

What Our Readers Are Saying

Add a comment for a chance to win!
Average customer rating based on 2 comments:

Marcia Mills, June 7, 2010 (view all comments by Marcia Mills)
Small Island is B I G!!! I am thankful to have been given a copy by British friends who found it wonderful and thought I would as well (I live in Calif.) Each of the voices is believable and poignant, and they are very different from each other. Having both Londoners and Jamaicans as personal friends--though in a different era (current)--I found the main characters lovable knowing their faults, and my heart ached for their hardships. It would be naive to believe the racial climate has reversed in the intervening years, though it has become more subtle, in the U.K. as well as in the U.S.A., but I am thankful for the brilliant exposition Levy has provided, and I will definitely check out her other books.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
bronwenmair, May 15, 2006 (view all comments by bronwenmair)
The book is fabulous and I can relate to the characters.I liked it so much it is my choice for Book Club,but I cannot find a READING GUIDE to facilitate my bookclub group.Any suggestions?
bronwenmair
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(18 of 30 readers found this comment helpful)
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780312424671
Subtitle:
A Novel
Author:
Levy, Andrea
Publisher:
Picador
Subject:
General
Subject:
England
Subject:
Social conditions
Subject:
General Fiction
Subject:
FIC045000
Subject:
London (England) Social conditions.
Subject:
Jamaicans - England - London - 20th century
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Family life
Subject:
Historical
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade Paper
Publication Date:
20100330
Binding:
Electronic book text in proprietary or open standard format
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
448
Dimensions:
8.26 x 5.57 x 0.91 in

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Related Subjects

Featured Titles » Literature
Featured Titles » Miscellaneous Award Winners
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » Family Life
History and Social Science » American Studies » Popular Culture

Small Island Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$5.50 In Stock
Product details 448 pages Picador USA - English 9780312424671 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "After winning the Orange Prize and the Whitbread Book of the Year Award, Levy's captivating fourth novel sweeps into a U.S. edition with much-deserved literary fanfare. Set mainly in the British Empire of 1948, this story of emigration, loss and love follows four characters — two Jamaicans and two Britons — as they struggle to find peace in postwar England. After serving in the RAF, Jamaican Gilbert Joseph finds life in his native country has become too small for him. But in order to return to England, he must marry Hortense Roberts — she's got enough money for his passage — and then set up house for them in London. The pair move in with Queenie Bligh, whose husband, Bernard, hasn't returned from his wartime post in India. But when does Bernard turn up, he is not pleased to find black immigrants living in his house. This deceptively simple plot poises the characters over a yawning abyss of colonialism, racism, war and the everyday pain that people inflict on one another. Levy allows readers to see events from each of the four character's' point of view, lightly demonstrating both the subjectivity of truth and the rationalizing lies that people tell themselves when they are doing wrong. None of the characters is perfectly sympathetic, but all are achingly human. When Gilbert realizes that his pride in the British Empire is not reciprocated, he wonders, 'How come England did not know me?' His question haunts the story as it moves back and forth in time and space to show how the people of two small islands become inextricably bound together. Agent, David Grossman." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "Entrancing and disturbing at the same time, theliterary equivalent of a switch-back ride."
"Review" by , "It's a magnificent achievement — and — the best compliment one novelist can give another, made me jealous. Congratulations."
"Review" by , "A work of great imaginative power which ranks alongside Sam Selvon's The Lonely Londoners, George Lamming's The Emigrants, and Caryl Phillips' The Final Passage in dealing with the experience of migration. I hope that this novel will get the critical attention it deserves." Linton Kwesi Johnson
"Review" by , "I enjoyed Small Island enormously. A wonderful insight into a little understood period."
"Review" by , "Small Island is a great read, delivering the sort of pleasure which has been the stock-in-trade of a long line of English novelists. It's honest, skilful, thoughtful and important. This is Andrea Levy's big book."
"Review" by , "It's an engrossing read — slyly funny, passionately angry and wholly involving."
"Review" by , "Small Island is never less than finely-written, delicately and often comically observed, and impressively rich in detail and little nuggets of stories."
"Review" by , "Andrea Levy has written one of those rare fictions that tells you things you didn't know but feel you should have known."
"Review" by , "Andrea Levy gives us a new urgent take on our past."
"Review" by , "Levy has a superb ear for dialogue that captures the nuances and quirks of speech and achieves the remarkable feat of both distilling and bringing into sharp relief the weighty themes of race, war, colonialism, migration and love."
"Review" by , "Small Island is a triumph of poise, organisation and deep, deep character — the sort of work that can only be achieved by an experienced novelist, comfortable with her powers and confident in her technique. Ugliness and struggle, humour and forbearance, this is the myriad-voiced sound of a nation in transformation."
"Synopsis" by ,
Small Island has sold a million copies worldwide. This new edition of the award-winning novel ties in with the BBC /Masterpiece theatre adaptation, and the publication of her new novel The Long Song (FSG)
"Synopsis" by ,
Winner of the 2004 Orange Prize for Fiction

A Picador Original Trade Paperback

Hortense Joseph arrives in London from Jamaica in 1948 with her life in her suitcase, her heart broken, her resolve intact. Her husband, Gilbert Joseph, returns from the war expecting to be received as a hero, but finds his status as a black man in Britain to be second class. His white landlady, Queenie, raised as a farmer's daughter, befriends Gilbert, and later Hortense, with innocence and courage, until the unexpected arrival of her husband, Bernard, who returns from combat with issues of his own to resolve.

Told in these four voices, Small Island is a courageous novel of tender emotion and sparkling wit, of crossings taken and passages lost, of shattering compassion and of reckless optimism in the face of insurmountable barriers---in short, an encapsulation of that most American of experiences: the immigrant's life.

Born in 1956 to Jamaican parents, Andrea Levy is the author of three previous novels and has received a British Arts Council Writers Award in addition to the Orange Prize and Whitbread distinctions. She lives and works in London.

"Synopsis" by ,
Small Island is an international bestseller.  It won the Orange Prize for Fiction, The Orange Prize for Fiction: Best of the Best, The Whitbread Novel Award, The Whitbread Book of the Year Award, and the Commonwealth Writers' Prize.  It has now been adapted for the screen as a coproduction of the BBC and Masterpiece/WGBH Boston.

Hortense Joseph arrives in London from Jamaica in 1948 with her life in her suitcase, her heart broken, her resolve intact. Her husband, Gilbert Joseph, returns from the war expecting to be received as a hero, but finds his status as a black man in Britain to be second class. His white landlady, Queenie, raised as a farmer's daughter, befriends Gilbert, and later Hortense, with innocence and courage, until the unexpected arrival of her husband, Bernard, who returns from combat with issues of his own to resolve.

 
Told in these four voices, Small Island is a courageous novel of tender emotion and sparkling wit, of crossings taken and passages lost, of shattering compassion and of reckless optimism in the face of insurmountable barriers---in short, an encapsulation of that most American of experiences: the immigrant's life.

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