- Also check our best rated Biography reviews
Kim (The Penguin English Library) Paperback – 31 Mar 1994
|New from||Used from|
Customers who bought this item also bought
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Kipling's epic rendition of the imperial experience in India is also his greatest long work. Two men - Kim, a boy growing into early manhood and the lama, an old ascetic priest - are fired by a quest. Kim is white, a sahib, although born in India. While he wants to play the Great Game of Imperialism, he is also spiritually bound to the lama and he tries to reconcile these opposing strands, while the lama searches for redemption from the Wheel of Life. A celebration of their friendship in an often hostile environment, Kim captures the opulence of India's exotic landscape, overlaid by the uneasy presence of the British Raj.
About the Author
Joseph Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) was born in India, although educated in England. He was a prolific writer and recognized as a genius. In 1907 he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. His many books for children includeJust So Stories and Kim.
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
I strongly believe that it is Kipling's greatest work; India just leaps off the page - the sights, sounds, smells, colours. I know that Kipling is deeply unfashionable and much reviled these days, but I find it hard to understand how this book could not be enjoyed by many. I was helped of course by my family's background in India, knowledge of where the places are, of many of the Hindi phrases and customs, the school (based I suspect on La Martiniere College in Lucknow) and the machinations of "The Great Game". I have a few family Indian photos left, and the memory of my mother and grandmothers' joint yearning for the India that they both left (like Kipling) and their occasional conversations in Hindi (which is how I picked up some of the words) were very nostalgic and perhaps one of the reasons I enjoyed it so much. Even in the 21st century, playing "Kim's Game" with Cubs is an interesting exercise in concentration and the story of the jewels it was originally played with sparked their interest when some children complained they didn't like games where they had to concentrate and think!
This book is by turns a sort of travelogue, a rite of passage, embraces Oriental philosophies, has a cracking good story, pays homage to Kipling's father and even has an interestingly ambiguous ending. I read it in full technicolour with all the people and scenes so clearly in my mind, which surely is the mark of a great novel.
This is not Longman Cultural Edition as described. To be fair there are small prints at the end of product description saying "--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.". However, I think this is very dishonest as the seller put product descriptions of Longman Cultural Edition of Kim then add this one line at the end as an excuse to send something completely different. I ordered it from my iPhone app so I didn't notice the last sentence the seller added. On top of that the font is too small - I'm 33 years old with good pair of eyes but even for me it's too small to enjoy the book. I would say font size is about 8-9. Dishonest, disgraceful and disgusting sales conduct. Returning this and ordering another version.
We follow Kim as a child living more or less on the streets as an orphan. He becomes attached to a Lama and becomes on the face of it his chela (a disciple/ follower) but after a time is taken up by the British authorities as Kim is not a native Indian. We see Kim getting schooling, not all the kind you would expect though, and then he is out again with the Lama, who is seeking a special holy river.
There is a lot of incident here, but from quite early on we can see Kim being used to deliver a message for the Secret Service. And it has to be said that a lot of people go on about this book due to its descriptions of Indian life, which are wonderful, but never seem to understand what the Great Game, or the Game as it is also called here is. Although we ruled India Russia also had ambitions to increase their empire, and so a game of cat and mouse was played between the two, rather like an early Cold War. The fear was that Russia would take over Afghanistan and the surrounding kingdoms and thus become a threat to our Empire. This is played out in this novel as Kim becomes a secret agent for the British, schooled in playing the game of spies.
Always an enjoyable read and I believe appearing on many books to read before you die lists, Kipling wrote here something that really goes on all the time, with countries spying on each other, and fearing future tactical developments. With a deft use of language Kipling gets across the differences in speech patterns between not only the British but the native Indians, from the higher classes to the lowest. If you have never read this before you really should do as it is a treat and has some good adventure.
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Most recent customer reviews
Kim is one of my favourite novels of all time so how delighted I was to come across an illustrated issue.Read more