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The Ministry of Utmost Happiness: ‘The Literary Read of the Summer’ - Time Hardcover – 6 Jun 2017

3.9 out of 5 stars 138 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Hamish Hamilton; 01 edition (6 Jun. 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0241303974
  • ISBN-13: 978-0241303979
  • Product Dimensions: 15.1 x 4 x 21.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars 138 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 12,018 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Review

She is back with a heavyweight state-of-the-nation story that has been ten years in the making (Daily Mail)

Roy's second novel proves as remarkable as her first (Financial Times)

A great tempest of a novel... which will leave you awed by the heat of its anger and the depth of its compassion (Washington Post)

A humane, engaged near-fairy tale that soon turns dark - full of characters and their meetings, accidental and orchestrated alike to find, yes, that utmost happiness of which the title speaks (Kirkus (starred review))

An author worth waiting two decades for (Financial Times)

Ambitious, original, and haunting. A novel [that] fuses tenderness and brutality, mythic resonance and the stuff of headlines . . .essential to Roy's vision of a bewilderingly beautiful, contradictory, and broken world (Publishers Weekly (starred review))

A masterpiece. Roy joins Dickens, Naipaul, García Márquez, and Rushdie in her abiding compassion, storytelling magic, and piquant wit. A tale of suffering, sacrifice and transcendence-an entrancing, imaginative, and wrenching epic (Donna Seaman Booklist (starred review))

The Ministry of Utmost Happiness confirms Roy's status as a writer of delicate human dramas that also touch on some of the largest questions of the day. It is the novel as intimate epic. Expect to see it on every prize shortlist this year (The Times)

Heartfelt, poetic, intimate, laced with ironic humour...The intensity of Roy's writing - the sheer amount she cares about these people - compels you to concentrate...This is the novel one hoped Arundhati Roy would write about India (Daily Telegraph)

Teems with human drama, contains a vivid cast of characters and offers an evocative, searing portrait of modern India (Tatler)

From the Inside Flap

The Ministry of Utmost Happiness takes us on a journey of many years-the story spooling outwards from the cramped neighbourhoods of Old Delhi into the burgeoning new metropolis and beyond, to the Valley of Kashmir and the forests of Central India, where war is peace and peace is war, and where, from time to time, 'normalcy' is declared.

Anjum, who used to be Aftab, unrolls a threadbare carpet in a city graveyard that she calls home. A baby appears quite suddenly on a pavement, a little after midnight, in a crib of litter. The enigmatic S. Tilottama is as much of a presence as she is an absence in the lives of the three men who loved her.

The Ministry of Utmost Happiness is at once an aching love story and a decisive remonstration. It is told in a whisper, in a shout, through tears and sometimes with a laugh. Its heroes are people who have been broken by the world they live in and then rescued, mended by love-and by hope. For this reason, they are as steely as they are fragile, and they never surrender. This ravishing, magnificent book reinvents what a novel can do and can be. And it demonstrates on every page the miracle of Arundhati Roy's storytelling gifts.

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