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Touching Earth [Paperback]

Rani Manicka
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

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Book Description

1 Aug 2005

THE BALINESE TWINS - Beautiful and exotic, they exchange an island paradise for the shabby squalor of London, and innocence for corruption.

THE SICILIAN- Ricky Delgado strikes a devil's bargain with a blood goddess: 'Build my temple and bring me the souls of damaged people, and you will see what rewards I give.'

THE COURTESAN - Elizabeth makes her living from men's desire. With a flick of the switch in her head, she feels nothing: no pain, no hate, no sorrow, no joy.

THE ARTIST - Anis takes to painting as an outlet for his rage. His artist's eye knows his subjects before they know themselves, and he paints them all, a gallery of broken people.

Can they escape the deadly web of decadence and sin?


Frequently Bought Together

Touching Earth + The Japanese Lover + The Rice Mother
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Product details

  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Sceptre; New edition edition (1 Aug 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0340823852
  • ISBN-13: 978-0340823859
  • Product Dimensions: 12.8 x 19.7 x 2.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 303,679 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Rani Manicka was born in Malaysia and spent her childhood on a long white, beach in the company of natural storytellers. But when she was six, she was stuffed into a uniform and banished to school. In protest, she quickly mastered the art of reading novels during class. Though, she had never dreamed of writing herself, a chance encounter with a woman scorned in an Italian restaurant inspired her first plot.

Her first novel The Rice Mother, Infused with her own Sri Lankan family history, is a vividly imaginative story about the frailties of human nature and the terrible consequences of war. It won a Commonwealth Writers Prize in 2003. Her subsequent novel, Touching Earth is a dark and compelling tale of love, betrayal and addiction. The Japanese Lover, set in Malaya during the Japanese occupation is an absorbing tale of the intense passion between captor and captured. Rani's books have been translated into 26 languages. She lives with the two great loves of her life; Rick and their beautiful son/dog, Ty.

Rani Manicka's latest novel BLACK JACK is out NOW

Product Description

Review

High on atmosphere and tension, this is another powerful novel from the author of THE RICE MOTHER. (Woman & Home)

Woven with the beautiful intricacy of a spider creating its web, Touching Earth uses exquisite, lyrical writing to present us with the harsh realities of heroin addiction, prostitution and innocence lost. (Heat)

Once again Rani Manicka has left me spellbound with her beautiful prose and intricately woven plot. Touching Earth is a dark and powerful tale by an extremely gifted storyteller. (Santa Montefiore)

Book Description

An exquisitely written novel of innocence corrupted from the award-winning author of THE RICE MOTHER

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A haunting read 8 Aug 2005
Format:Paperback
Having read Rani's other novel- The Rice Mother, I thought this book was also going to be poetic and a gem. Instead it was a brutal look into life (read: sex and drugs) in London when you're transplanted from a village in South Asia. A pair of Balinese twin girls are sent by their father to live in London on their own (with their paternal uncle checking on them from time to time) after their mother dies. They find a flat, get paid a meagre wage at a restaurant and fall into trouble almost instantaneously. They meet a restauranteur who is sex-crazed, lusts after one of them, and introduces them to drugs and a circle of depraved friends. Their life and their innocence, as they know it, is over. Too late, they realise that life back at home was simple even if they didn't have all they wanted, but atleast they had each other and a grandmother who loved them. The author must have done some very indepth research into how drug users live; her characters are not conceived out of thin air. However, this is book is NOT a "light read". I found it disturbing, sad and haunting.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A very dark story - beautifully written 30 July 2007
By A. Hope
Format:Paperback
I was attracted to this book by the cover - a cover I think is very misleading. Despite this not being the book I thought it was I did enjoy reading it. This is a very well written novel, with characters I am afraid may haunt me. The novel explores the depths that human beings can sink to. Set mainly in drug riddled London amid the prostitutes, addicts and pushers - we meet a group of truly lost souls, and go with them on a journey which leads the reader inevitably to increasingly nastier places as the novel progresses. this is a dark, brutal story within a beautifully written novel, and maybe wouldn't be to everyone's taste. I did however find it compelling and unforgettable. I was only glad that I read it quickly over about 2 days as I don't think I would have wanted to live with these characters for longer than that.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A haunting book 8 Aug 2005
Format:Hardcover
Having read Rani's other novel- The Rice Mother, I thought this book was also going to be poetic and a gem. Instead it was a brutal look into life (read: sex and drugs) in London when you're transplanted from a village in Asia. A pair of twin girls are sent by their father to live in London on their own (with their paternal uncle checking on them from time to time). They find a flat, get paid a meagre wage at a restaurant and fall into trouble almost instantaneously. It goes downhill after they meet a restauranteur who is sex-crazed, lusts after one of them, and introduces them to drugs. Their life as they know it, goes downhill from there. They realise that life back at home was simple even if they didn't have all they wanted, but atleast they had each other and a grandmother who loved them. The author must have done some very indepth research into how druggies live, her characters are not conceived out of thin air. However, this is book is NOT a "light read". I found it disturbing, sad and haunting.
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4.0 out of 5 stars good train read. 15 Aug 2008
By Iorek
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
i know they say not to judge a book by its cover... but thats exactly what i did when i got this book. i saw the cover and i thought that looks really good and without even reading the synopsis at the back i had the book at the bottom of my bag!

i did expect it to be a little mystical with some relation to some of the ceriemonies and traditions which are carried out in malasiya/philipines/japa...etc.

to my disappointment it was not... more of a story of sex, drugs, mistaken choices in life and how these particular people coped with it! dont get me wrong it was a great book. quite a intriguing read and keeps you wanting more at the end of each chapter. it just wasnt what i thought it would be. otherwise great book (there are some references to the spiders temple but it seems more of an unwanted addition to the story rather than incorporated into the story)
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Speechless! 17 Dec 2005
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
This book is raw and at times shocking, but a fantastic read. It took me the first twenty pages to accept this book wasn't going the same way as 'The Rice Mother' but i'm glad I kept at it. Very realistic characters. Probably more so than her previous novel, as they felt more real, like someone you could know. I did feel a few questions were left lying loose about the paths of Nutan and Ricky in the end, as to whether they fulfilled their destinys. In particular Ricky, he is such a strong character I question whether is really that how things are meant to be for him.
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5.0 out of 5 stars wonderfully engaging 16 Oct 2009
Format:Paperback
Fantastically engaging, Manika takes you into a world of dark secrets and personal journeys as you follow the lives of the characters. the tale is wrought with sadness and personal triumphs. written with the same mastery as the "Rice Mother" but if you are expecting the book to be the same then prepare to be dissapointed as this read is much darker.
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