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This title in other editions

Tigerman

by

Tigerman Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Sergeant Lester Ferris is a good man in need of a rest. After a long career of being shot at, he’s about to be retired. The mildly larcenous, backwater island of Mancreu is the ideal place to serve out his time, a former British colony in legal limbo, belching toxic clouds of waste and facing imminent destruction by an international community concerned for their own safety. The perfect place for Lester is also the perfect location for a multinational array of shady businesses. Hence the Black Fleet of illicit ships lurking in the bay: spy stations, arms dealers, offshore hospitals, money-laundering operations, drug factories and torture centers. None of which should be a problem, since Lester’s brief is to sit tight and turn a blind eye.

Meanwhile, he befriends a brilliant, Internet-addled street kid with a comic-book fixation who will need a new home when the island dies. When Mancreu’s fragile society erupts in violence, Lester must be more than just an observer: he has no choice but to rediscover the man of action he once was, and find out what kind of hero the island — and the boy — will need.

From the award-winning author of Angelmaker and The Gone-Away World, Tigerman is a novel at once deeply heartfelt and headlong thrilling — about parenthood, friendship and secret identities, about heroes of both the super and the everyday kind.

Review:

"All his tours of duty can't prepare British army Sgt. Lester Ferris, a veteran of the War in Afghanistan, for life on an island facing certain ecological destruction, in Harkaway's poignant morality tale, equally fueled by emotion and adrenaline. Though the fictional island of Mancreu, located somewhere in the Arabian sea, is no longer officially under the thumb of the British government — the Brits ceded control to an international peacekeeping force — Ferris is appointed brevet-consul, a largely ceremonial post that's supposedly a last stop for him before he can leave army life behind for good. Mancreu is anything but an island paradise. Long exposed to harsh mining involving the island's volcano, it's a ticking time bomb, with the residents waiting for the next in a string of toxic events, known as 'Clouds.' The sergeant's only real friend, and surrogate son, is a comic-book-loving, Internet-slang-spouting teenage boy he calls Robin (think Batman), who helps him navigate Mancreu's social and political intricacies. With a mishmash of countries all fighting for a piece of the island, either under the auspices of national pride or scientific experimentation, it's no surprise that Mancreu has a thriving black market, operating out of a flotilla of ships moored just outside the harbor. The murder of one of Ferris's acquaintances sets off a chain of increasingly violent events that coincide with an incoming Cloud, all of which threaten to destroy not only the bodies but the minds of Mancreu's inhabitants. Harkaway (Angelmaker) adroitly explores the lengths one man will go to save what he's come to love, even in the face of almost-certain failure. (July)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Review:

"[Tigerman] is, in short, awesome. Read it immediately....Abundantly funny....And incredibly moving, too....All in all a much softer, sweeter and more surprising something than I had imagined....For all that Tigerman seems to be about a superhero on the surface, appearances are deceiving indeed: Harkaway is markedly more interested in the relationship between Lester and his friend....In Harkaway’s hands, this friendship is as gripping as any mystery." Niall Alexander, Tor.com

Review:

“Brilliantly imagined....A hoot and a half, and then some: hands down, the best island farce since Vonnegut’s Cat’s Cradle.” Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

Review:

“Extraordinary....The action sequences in Tigerman are some of Harkaway’s best. As ever, the writing is economical but lively, revelling in modern idiom....[Has] the cinematic scope and dynamism one has come to expect from Harkaway....The ending of Tigerman is pitch-perfect, thrilling and dramatic.” Literary Review (UK)

About the Author

Nick Harkaway is the author of two previous novels, The Gone-Away World and Angelmaker, and a nonfiction work about digital culture, The Blind Giant: Being Human in a Digital World. He is also a regular blogger for The Bookseller’s FutureBook website. He lives in London with his wife, a human rights lawyer, and their two children.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 2 comments:

Jonathan, October 21, 2014 (view all comments by Jonathan)
Harkaway takes a fantastic, almost absurd premise and imbues it with the ugly realities of political maneuvering and a kid's vision of comic book superheroes. The result is an origin story that almost seems plausible. It's a costumed crime-fighter for the literary crowd, perhaps the best comics-inspired prose I've read since Michael Chabon's Kavalier & Clay.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
Ryan DeJonghe, July 24, 2014 (view all comments by Ryan DeJonghe)
Ahhhhhhhh! You ever read a book and think, “Meh, that was nice.” But then after you close it, it just builds on you. There was something between the lines that planted a seed in you and it grew and grew and grew. That’s what happened to me with Nick Harkaway’s TIGERMAN. I was ready to give it a four-star rating, walk away, and call it good. Nope.


First, Harkaway knows me. He’s one of my people. As soon as I saw him mention “gold farming”…I knew. In-game chat channels, leet speak, comic culture: all my people’s language. So that was nice. As Harkaway writes, “it had a digital flavor, merry and modern.”


Second, there’s the island as a character. Right away we witness a pelican swallowing a pigeon. Amusing. But then it dawned on me later, “Hey! That was symbolic, wasn’t it?” On one hand, we see an island lose its culture and people, being assimilated into the larger world social scheme. On the other hand, we find those who embrace the simplicity and roots of who they are. And, as the author points out, those Leaving were in a majority, while “staying had not been dignified with a capital letter.”


Finally, there’s the relationship between man and boy. That’s the part eating me alive. In this book we witness what a man will become--how he changes--in the face of parental responsibility. And, as a result of that willingness to change, how the child molds, reflects, and responds to that change. “Endearing” would be a good starting word to describe the emotion while witnessing this change. There’s plenty more.


This book has everything else: action, romance, adventure. But, at the risk of sounding like a movie announcer, let me stick to those first three points above. The context of TIGERMAN goes way beyond the story and penetrates the heart. That, to me, is full of what I want in a story. Something that makes me think outside the pages and turns me into a more retrospective person because of it.


My final thoughts reflect those of the boy: “”Tigerman,” the boy said fervently. “Full of win.””


Thanks to Knopf for providing this book electronically for me to review. Do you folks have a Tigerman outfit I can review, too? I want one.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
View all 2 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780385352413
Author:
Harkaway, Nick
Publisher:
Knopf Publishing Group
Subject:
Adventure
Subject:
Popular Fiction - Adventure
Publication Date:
20140731
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Language:
English
Pages:
352
Dimensions:
9.55 x 6.6 x 1.36 in 1.38 lb

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Tigerman New Hardcover
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$26.95 In Stock
Product details 352 pages Knopf Publishing Group - English 9780385352413 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "All his tours of duty can't prepare British army Sgt. Lester Ferris, a veteran of the War in Afghanistan, for life on an island facing certain ecological destruction, in Harkaway's poignant morality tale, equally fueled by emotion and adrenaline. Though the fictional island of Mancreu, located somewhere in the Arabian sea, is no longer officially under the thumb of the British government — the Brits ceded control to an international peacekeeping force — Ferris is appointed brevet-consul, a largely ceremonial post that's supposedly a last stop for him before he can leave army life behind for good. Mancreu is anything but an island paradise. Long exposed to harsh mining involving the island's volcano, it's a ticking time bomb, with the residents waiting for the next in a string of toxic events, known as 'Clouds.' The sergeant's only real friend, and surrogate son, is a comic-book-loving, Internet-slang-spouting teenage boy he calls Robin (think Batman), who helps him navigate Mancreu's social and political intricacies. With a mishmash of countries all fighting for a piece of the island, either under the auspices of national pride or scientific experimentation, it's no surprise that Mancreu has a thriving black market, operating out of a flotilla of ships moored just outside the harbor. The murder of one of Ferris's acquaintances sets off a chain of increasingly violent events that coincide with an incoming Cloud, all of which threaten to destroy not only the bodies but the minds of Mancreu's inhabitants. Harkaway (Angelmaker) adroitly explores the lengths one man will go to save what he's come to love, even in the face of almost-certain failure. (July)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Review" by , "[Tigerman] is, in short, awesome. Read it immediately....Abundantly funny....And incredibly moving, too....All in all a much softer, sweeter and more surprising something than I had imagined....For all that Tigerman seems to be about a superhero on the surface, appearances are deceiving indeed: Harkaway is markedly more interested in the relationship between Lester and his friend....In Harkaway’s hands, this friendship is as gripping as any mystery."
"Review" by , “Brilliantly imagined....A hoot and a half, and then some: hands down, the best island farce since Vonnegut’s Cat’s Cradle.”
"Review" by , “Extraordinary....The action sequences in Tigerman are some of Harkaway’s best. As ever, the writing is economical but lively, revelling in modern idiom....[Has] the cinematic scope and dynamism one has come to expect from Harkaway....The ending of Tigerman is pitch-perfect, thrilling and dramatic.”
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