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The Man Who Would Be King

The Man Who Would Be King [Kindle Edition]

Rudyard Kipling
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (77 customer reviews)

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Product Description


"An excellent collection with particularly thorough notes."--Professor M. Mackey, Ph.D., California State University, Sacramento
"A lovely little book."--James Dahl, West Georgia College

Product Description

This book was converted from its physical edition to the digital format by a community of volunteers. You may find it for free on the web. Purchase of the Kindle edition includes wireless delivery.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 178 KB
  • Print Length: 40 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00848SAL6
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (77 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #804 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Always Enjoyable 9 Oct 2010
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is a great little novella from the pen of Kipling. This was in fact inspired by a couple of real events and so there is some fact in this tale. Our narrator is a journalist who meets a couple of down and out adventurers on the course of his jorneys. They tell him of there plans.

A few years later one of these adventurers turns up to tell the journalist what they managed to do. With our two adventurers planning to set themselves up in royal form they come to a remote area in Afghansistan. This tale is the story of their exploits and adventures as they plan to make themselves kings.

Not really meant to be at the time, nowadays this can be seen as a satirical allegory of European expansionism and empire building.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My favourite story 24 Mar 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The Man Who Would Be King is my favourite film and leaves me with a tear in my eye every single time as Peachy explains to Brother Kipling who he and his friend Danny went off to old Kafiristan to be kings. It's a film I have watched over 20 times and always wanted to read the book. When my beloved bought me a Kindle for my birthday I wasted no time in downloading this brief tale for FREE!

It is somewhat different to the film but much of the films memorable dialogue is lifted word for word from the book - god's holy trousers, have I not put the shadow of my hand over this country, for the sake of the widow's son, etc. Furthermore, Danny Dravot is not quite as sympathetic as Sean Connery portrayed him, Peachy is more of a central figure than Michael Caine made him and Billy Fish is very, very different from the delightful version created by Sayed Jaffrey, but the book is an absolute delight. I read it in two sessions and was so glad I did. Kipling's prose is easy to read and as fresh today as it was when he wrote it when Victoria was on the throne. I loved the film and I love the book. Genuinely magnificent.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars magic 30 Jan 2006
By Royale
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is the work of a maestro....a true genius of literature. I recently read Kim by Kipling and, having always thought it to be a children's book, was delighted at the sheer quality of writing, its narrative drive, its incredible characters and colour and sense of time and place. The Man Who Would Be King, though occasionally not equalled in some of the other short stories sitting alongside it, is a classic. Anyone who recalls the film version with Michael Caine and Sean Connery, will not be disappointed.
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31 of 36 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A classic I've never read! 23 Nov 2010
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Wow, thanks Amazon for Kindle on Android (free app!). I have never read any of Kipling's works that I can remember, but as this was free to download to Kindle I thought I'd give it a go, and what a revelation! For start, the way it's written is somewhat old fashioned some may think, but is bang on for the era, and if you just take a moment to get used to the language form at the beginning, it becomes very natural within a few pages. The story is really quite interesting, set in Asia I believe in the latter 19th century, and effectively is the story of two unfortunate colonials who have grand ideas but lack the education to bring them to fruition in conventional ways.

I've really enjoyed reading this, and it really keeps my attention. Having the book on my mobile phone is great because I can open it up whenever I have 5 minutes no matter where I am.

I think I've had this 3 days and am half way through already (though I've been working most of this time!). Can't wait to see how things end up.

If you've never read a classic work then I would really encourage you to do so, and if you've read this as a kid at school, read it again, I promise you won't be disappointed!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The changes and chances in colonial life 4 Dec 2009
This anthology of short stories gives an excellent picture of the works of a Member of the British Empire. Rudyard Kipling had a partisan view on the British colonial enterprise which was based on a well-organized army machine. But, as George Orwell said: he didn't understand that `an empire is primarily a money-making concern'.

Army and war
Those who fight under the British flag are mightily admired and incensed for their courage and self-sacrifice, but woe for those who seek their own kingdom.
In `The Drums of Fore and Aft' two orphans of fourteen years of age (!), who serve as Regiment drummers, are highly praised for offering their lives in a skirmish with Afghan rebels.
In `Only a Subaltern', a new recruit is himself attacked by fever after having physically and morally supported a soldier friend.
But, in `The Man Who Would be King', two solitary fortune seekers fall shamelessly from their throne.

In the heartrending masterpiece of this collection, `Baa Baa Black Sheep', R. Kipling lambastes the ravages of religion: `the Fear of the Lord was so often the beginning of falsehood ... for when young lips have drunk deep of the bitter waters of Hate, Suspicion and Despair, all the Love in the world will not wholly take away that knowledge.'

Colonial life
In `The Education of Otis Yeere', two would-be prick teasers warm the heart of a bachelor, only to be mightily offended when he tries to give one of them a kiss.
`At the Pit's Month' and `A Wayward Comedy' are variations on the theme of `a Man and his Wife and a Tertium Quid'. Only, the friendship among men stays above the shame of cuckolding.
`Wee Willie Winkie' praises the courage of a young boy.
`A Second Rate Woman' attacks people's prejudice.
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