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Sea of Poppies by Amitav Ghosh
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Sea of Poppies (original 2008; edition 2009)

by Amitav Ghosh

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
2,2031292,946 (3.96)2 / 646
Member:fuzzy_patters
Title:Sea of Poppies
Authors:Amitav Ghosh
Info:Picador (2009), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 560 pages
Collections:ebook
Rating:****1/2
Tags:fiction, India, opium, imperialism, sea travel

Work details

Sea of Poppies by Amitav Ghosh (2008)

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English (123)  Italian (4)  Spanish (2)  Catalan (2)  Norwegian (2)  Vietnamese (1)  All (134)
Showing 1-5 of 123 (next | show all)
I'd rate this a 2.5 which I have rounded up to a 3.

Sea of Poppies is a period piece and it gave a good idea of the opium trade back in the colonial times. I did enjoy the sailing parts (as I am a sailor), but on the whole, the book didn't appeal to me.

In my opinion, this story could have been a whole lot shorter. I think that given the length of the book that the characters could have been better developed. There were too many characters for my liking, too.

I'm writing this brief review a month after reading the book and my memory of it is a blur. I can't even remember the ending, for goodness sake. Was there an ending, or was it left off in the hope that readers would proceed to the next book in the series?

( )
  LemonyT | Apr 21, 2017 |
Rollicking, inventive, adventurous, brilliant novel about the opium trade in British India circa 1840. The novel follows a group of disparate individuals who converge on a ship called the Ibis, which is set to carry coolies (Indian migrant workers) from Calcutta to Mauritius. Many of the characters speak a patois called Bhojpuri, and the linguistiv inventiveness of the novel alone is astounding. Loved it. ( )
  jalbacutler | Jan 10, 2017 |
It's the first book of a yet-unwritten trilogy. I simply cannot wait for the next installment. Brilliant writing, totally immersive historical fiction, with astute relevance to modern issues. My favorite kind of book. ( )
1 vote trwm | Oct 6, 2016 |
Its an amazing book... hope everyone reads this atleast once ( )
  PallaviSharma | May 9, 2016 |
Enjoyed this very much. I should probably reread River of Smoke before moving on to the final book in the trilogy now that I know some of the characters' backgrounds and see if having read this one makes a difference to my feelings about the book.I didn't even realize when I read River of Smoke that Sea of Poppies preceded it. Looking forward to the third book! ( )
  NatalieSW | Apr 5, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 123 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Amitav Ghoshprimary authorall editionscalculated
Risvik, KjellTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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The vision of a tall-masted ship, at sail on the ocean, came to Deeti on an otherwise ordinary day, but she knew instantly that the apparition was a sign of destiny for she had never seen such a vessel before, not even in a dream: how could she have, living as she did in northern Bihar, four hundred miles from the coast?
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(...) dat de essentie van die transformatie gelegen was in een enkel woord (...)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0312428596, Paperback)

The first in an epic trilogy, Sea of Poppies is "a remarkably rich saga . . . which has plenty of action and adventure à la Dumas, but moments also of Tolstoyan penetration--and a drop or two of Dickensian sentiment" (The Observer [London]).


At the heart of this vibrant saga is a vast ship, the Ibis. Her destiny is a tumultuous voyage across the Indian Ocean shortly before the outbreak of the Opium Wars in China. In a time of colonial upheaval, fate has thrown together a diverse cast of Indians and Westerners on board, from a bankrupt raja to a widowed tribeswoman, from a mulatto American freedman to a free-spirited French orphan. As their old family ties are washed away, they, like their historical counterparts, come to view themselves as jahaj-bhais, or ship-brothers. The vast sweep of this historical adventure spans the lush poppy fields of the Ganges, the rolling high seas, and the exotic backstreets of Canton. With a panorama of characters whose diaspora encapsulates the vexed colonial history of the East itself, Sea of Poppies is "a storm-tossed adventure worthy of Sir Walter Scott" (Vogue).



 

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:25:16 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

At the heart of this vibrant saga is a vast ship, the Ibis. Her destiny is a tumultuous voyage across the Indian Ocean shortly before the outbreak of the Opium Wars in China.

(summary from another edition)

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