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Behind the Beautiful Forevers

Life, Death and Hope in a Mumbai Slum

«This is an astonishing book. It is astonishing on several levels: as a worm's-eye view of the "undercity" of one of the world's largest metropolises; as an intensely reported, deeply felt account of the lives, hopes and fears of people traditionally excluded from literate narratives; as a story that truly hasn't been told before, at least not about India and not by a foreigner ... The result is a searing account, in effective and racy prose, that reads like a thrilling novel but packs a punch Sinclair Lewis might have envied.»

Shashi Tharoor, Washington Post

'A Mumbai slum understood and imagined as never before in language of intense beauty' Salman Rushdie

'If Bollywood ever decides to do its own version of The Wire, this would be it' Barbara Ehrenreich

Annawadi is a slum at the edge of Mumbai Airport, in the shadow of shining new luxury hotels. Les mer

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'A Mumbai slum understood and imagined as never before in language of intense beauty' Salman Rushdie

'If Bollywood ever decides to do its own version of The Wire, this would be it' Barbara Ehrenreich

Annawadi is a slum at the edge of Mumbai Airport, in the shadow of shining new luxury hotels. Its residents are garbage recyclers and construction workers, economic migrants, all of them living in the hope that a small part of India's booming future will eventually be theirs. But when a crime rocks the slum community and global recession and terrorism shocks the city, tensions over religion, caste, sex, power, and economic envy begin to turn brutal.

As Boo gets to know those who dwell in Mumbai's margins, she evokes an extraordinarily vivid group of individuals flourishing against the odds amid the complications, corruptions and gross inequalities of the new India.

'A triumph of a book. A beautiful account of the sorrows and joys, anxieties and stamina, in the lives of the precarious and powerless in urban India' Amartya Sen, winner of the Nobel Prize for Economics

'Magnificent...a masterpiece... Quite simply, one of the finest works on contemporary India yet written' Sunday Telegraph

Detaljer

Forlag
Granta Books
Innbinding
Paperback
Språk
Engelsk
Sider
288
ISBN
9781846274510
Utgivelsesår
2013
Format
20 x 13 cm
Priser
Winner of Pulitzer Prize 2011 UK and National Book Award 2012 UK. Short-listed for Guardian First Book Award 2012 UK and Samuel Johnson Prize 2012 UK and National Book Critics Circle Award 2013 UK and PEN/John Kenneth Galbraith Award for Nonfiction 2013 UK and Dayton Literary Peace Prize 2013 UK.

Om forfatteren

Katherine Boo is an investigative journalist focusing on matters of poverty and opportunity. A contributor to the New Yorker magazine since 2001, she was previously a reporter and editor at the Washington Post. Among the honours her work has received are a MacArthur Foundation 'Genius' Grant, a National Magazine Award, and the Pulitzer Prize for Public Service. This, her first book, won the 2012 National Book Award for Non-Fiction and the PEN/Galbraith Award for Nonfiction, and was shortlisted for the Samuel Johnson Prize, the Guardian First Book Award, the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize.

Anmeldelser

«This is an astonishing book. It is astonishing on several levels: as a worm's-eye view of the "undercity" of one of the world's largest metropolises; as an intensely reported, deeply felt account of the lives, hopes and fears of people traditionally excluded from literate narratives; as a story that truly hasn't been told before, at least not about India and not by a foreigner ... The result is a searing account, in effective and racy prose, that reads like a thrilling novel but packs a punch Sinclair Lewis might have envied.»

Shashi Tharoor, Washington Post

«A page-turner with a gripping human story, this is essential reading for anyone interested in the real India.»

Jonathan Foreman, Mail on Sunday

«Her prose is so beautiful, witty and economical, her narrative so powerful, that it's easy to forget this is an unprecedented piece of investigative journalism as well.»

Amy Walden, Financial Times

«Boo produces a gripping narrative of urban deprivation, underworld scams, sexual abuse, social injustice and human tragedy... Boo shows the human cost of Mumbai's burgeoning economic prosperity with disturbing brilliance.»

Metro

«Read this book for its insights into the wealth divide that exists in India's "richest" city. But also enjoy its ability to entertain as a novel does.»

Evening Chronicle

«The product of prolonged and risky self-exposure to Annawadi, the narrative stitches, with much skilfully unspoken analysis, some carefully researched individual lives... [It has] considerable literary power.»

Pankaj Mishra, Scotsman

«An exceptional piece of reportage.»

Sunday Times Must Reads

«An inspiring portrait of the human struggle to make a home in the most hellish situation.»

Woman & Home

«Honest and often deeply affecting, Boo's book deserves a place alongside the award-winning studies of North Korea and war-torn Sarajevo by Barbara Demick.»

Literary Review

«The hope - and the hopelessness - recorded here is utterly heartbreaking, but never mawkish or indulgent... Starkly documents the ever-growing disparity between India's rich and poor... Truly important'»

Bryony Gordon, Daily Telegraph

«[A] finely hewn, gently humoured and tough-minded work of lasting import. Behind the Beautiful Forevers combines ethical clarity and writerly exactitude to stimulate outrage and unsettling pleasure»

Guy Mannes-Abbott, Independent

«Vivid and full of insight»

Anjali Joseph, Prospect

«If you have no idea what life in the slums is like then I suspect this book will shock you. I can see why many people are naming it as their book of the year.»

Farm Lane Books

«In this tough-minded debut, [Boo] asks why the poor don't rise up, and why unequal societies don't implode. Her answers are embedded in a narrative as pacy as a thriller»

Maggie Fergusson, Intelligent Life

«Boo takes us to the slums of Mumbai and paints a vivid pictue of both poverty and resistance»

Belfast Telegraph

«A book of extraordinary intelligence, humanity and (formalistic) cunning... [Boo] humanizes with all the force of literature the impossible lives of the people at bottom of our pharaonic global order, and details with a journalist's unsparing exactitude the absolute suffering that undergirds India's economic boom. The portraits [are] indelible... groundbreaking»

Junot Díaz

«This is reality - and a shocking one at that»

Vanessa Baird, New Internationalist

«[A] heartbreaking account of life in a Mumbai slum»

Anita Singh, Telegraph

«Behind the Beautiful Forevers reads like a novel by Dickens, but is a real-life depiction of the challenges hundreds of millions of people face every day in urban slums. It's also a reminder of the humanity that connects us all»

Bill Gates

«Astonishingly vivid, beautifully written»

Steve Barfield, The Lady

«The level of attention she gives the people in her book is so profound and respectful»

Guernica Magazine

«Skilful and compassionate writing without sentimentality or mythic abstraction»

Martha Nussbaum, Times Literary Supplement

«A remarkable debut... The book's strength lies in its relentless focus on the grim human realities of poverty»

Andrew Graham Dixon, BBC 2, Culture Show

«Boo seems to have expanded the possibilities of the form with her scrupulous, novelistic imaginings of the thoughts of Mumbai slum-dwellers»

Paul Laity, Guardian

«An exemplary piece of deep reporting... Meticulous and gripping»

Stephen Bleach, Books of the Year, Sunday Times

«Looks hard into places of extreme despair, and comes back brimming with irrepressible life... A masterpiece»

Tim Adams, Books of the Year, Observer

«Deploying spare, unadorned prose, Boo throws the slumdwellers into such sharp relief that, reading the book, one has the sense of seeing them at first hand ... By absenting herself, Boo endows her writing with an uncommon immediacy.»

Nikhil Kumar, Independent on Sunday

«A powerful and sobering book.»

Conde Nast Traveller

«An extraordinary, intimate and gripping book, which it is no exaggeration to describe as a milestone in writing about poverty, and already one of this year's most memorable reads ... Boo's seamlessly structured narrative allows these stories to unfold alongside the personal dramas of the characters. Her tone is admirably restrained, and never patronising or mawkish ... The close focus of Behind the Beautiful Forevers is what gives it its clarity, and makes it so affecting.»

Alex Von Tunzelmann, Evening Standard

«In the end one puts down this impressive work relieved that one can rest from the remorselessness of its tragedies yet grateful one has learned about them from a writer who combines such innate human sympathy with such high literary skill. We can be grateful too to that unabridged dictionary for serving an unintended purpose.»

David Gilmour, Spectator

«The harsh life of a Mumbai slum vividly recreated on the page in beautiful prose. Her characters are irresistibly alive. No slumdogs or millionaires here. Just the truth»

Salman Rushdie, Books of the Year, The Times

«A devastating portrayal of street-dwellers struggling to survive against insurmountable odds»

Sunday Herald

«Boo has given us an insightful portrait of slum life»

Jan Breman, New Left Review

«A small masterpiece»

Travel Awards 2012, Oldie

«A worm's eye view of the corruption and gross inequality of the new India, which was ecstatically reviewed from New York to New Delhi»

Books of the Year, The Week

«Fascinating... Boo makes no political comment about the need for change but rather, like good writers before her who describe appalling inequalities, she allows her characters to speak for themselves»

Peter Gruner, Camden New Journal

«Vivid»

Michael Neale, Asian Affairs

«My favourite non-fiction book about the subcontinent, but one that reads like a soap opera. The tragedies, loves, disappointments and joys of the slum-dwellers of Mumbai are brought thrillingly to life by the author, who lived among them for two years. A testimony to brute survival and the human spirit.»

Author Deborah Moggach, Week

«With her precise descriptions of relationships and the tragic lives of her characters, Katherine Boo's Behind the Beautiful Forevers reads like expertly crafted fiction»

President Barack Obama, Wired

«A book [which] is no longer on the frontlist, but provide[s] vital ways for us to deepen the conversation... [it] stays with the reader and audience alike»

Ted Hodgkinson, Bookseller

«A triumph of a book. A beautiful account of the sorrows and joys, anxieties and stamina, in the lives of the precarious and powerless in urban India... A brilliant book that simultaneously informs, agitates, angers, inspires and instigates.»

Amartya Sen, winner of the Nobel Prize for Economics

«Magnificent... Boo does not flinch from addressing Mumbai's social inequalities, in particular the plight of its underclass... A masterpiece... quite simply, one of the finest works on contemporary India yet written.»

Ian Thomson, Sunday Telegraph

«One of the most powerful indictments of economic inequality I've ever read. If Bollywood ever decides to do its own version of The Wire, this would be it.»

Barbara Ehrenreich

«Behind the Beautiful Forevers is already a legend...It cannot be dismissed as yet another lazy excursion into slum poverty tourism, or as an outsider's account of India... Unforgettable.»

Nilanjana Roy, Business Standard

«It might surprise you how completely enjoyable this book is, as rich and beautifully written as a novel. In the hierarchy of long form reporting, Katherine Boo is right up there.»

David Sedaris

«Novelists dream of defining characters this swiftly and beautifully, but Boo is not a novelist. She is a rare deep-digging journalists who can make truth surpass fiction, a documentarian with a superb sense of human drama.»

Janet Maslin, New York Times

«Kate Boo's reporting is a form of kinship. There are books that change the way you feel and see; this is one of them. If we receive the fiery spirit from which it was written, it ought to change much more than that.»

Adrian LeBlanc, author of Random Family

«Without question the best book thus written on contemporary India.»

Ramachandra Guha, author of India After Gandhi

«A fantastic book.»

David Remnick, New Yorker

«A superb book.»

Tracy Kidder, author of Mountains Beyond Mountains

«Remember the title Behind the Beautiful Forevers because you will see it on upcoming nominee lists for the next round of Very Important Literary Prizes... An unforgettable true story, meticulously researched with unblinking honesty ... it is pure, astonishing reportage.»

Christian Science Monitor

«There are cult filmmakers and cult novelists, but Katherine Boo may be the world's only cult journalist.»

Salon

«Character development. An acute ear for dialogue and idiom. A sense of place. These are the essential ingredients of a good novel. So what's a fiction writer like me supposed to do when Boo employs all these and writes a book of nonfiction so stellar it puts most novels to shame? How can I not envy a work that takes us on harrowing journey into an unfamiliar world of an urban slum and makes us citizens of that world? To add salt to my literary wounds: That slum is located in Mumbai, the city of my birth, one I've written about frequently, and until now, claimed to know and understand. It turns out I knew little. And understood even less.»

Thrity Umrigar, Boston Globe

«A riveting, fearlessly reported portrait of a poverty so obliterating that it amounts to a slow-motion genocide. Behind the Beautiful Forevers will be one of the year's big books - a conversation starter, an award winner... The book plays out like a swift, richly plotted novel. That's partly because Boo writes so damn well.»

Entertainment Weekly

«An astoundingly well-reported and beautifully crafted book on 21st century India...distilled into prose that blows you away with its beauty, wit and restraint.»

Outlook India

«[Has the suspense, sensation and tragedy of a novel, except that every word is real.»

The Hindu

«Remarkable.»

Ian Jack, New York Review of Books

«Reads so much like a well-crafted novel ... A compelling book which combines the skills of journalistic reportage and emotive storytelling, and excels at both.»

Alastair Mabbott, Herald

«A bravura work of non-fiction that goes beyond clichéd, patronising depictions of poverty to raise uncomfortable questions about justice and opportunity for India's urban poor in the age of global market capitalism ... Thanks to the transcendent quality of Boo's prose, this "sumpy plug of slum" springs to life with all the drama and vividness of great fiction ... Boo's great achievement is to have overcome barriers of language, culture and ethnicity to get inside the minds of her subjects to decode their innermost thoughts. And because she has written about the everyday experiences of real people, using real names, we get to rub our noses in the dirt of Annawadi, see the world through their eyes.»

Vikas Swarup, FT

«Must read: a Mumbai slum imagined and understood as never before in language of intense beauty.»

Salman Rushdie

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