River of Smoke by Amitav Ghosh
River of Smoke: Book summary and reviews of River of Smoke by Amitav Ghosh
River of Smoke Summary
The Ibis, loaded to its gunwales with a cargo of indentured servants, is in the grip of a cyclone in the Bay of Bengal; among the dozens flailing for survival are Neel, the pampered raja who has been convicted of embezzlement; Paulette, the French orphan masquerading as a deck hand; and Deeti, the widowed poppy grower fleeing her homeland with her lover, Kalua. The storm also threatens the clipper ship Anahita, groaning with the largest consignment of opium ever to leave India for Canton. And the Redruth, a nursery ship, carries "Fitcher" Penrose, a horticulturist determined to track down the priceless treasures of China that are hidden in plain sight: plants that have the power to heal, or beautify, or intoxicate. All will converge in Canton's Fanqui-Town, or Foreign Enclave: a tumultuous world unto itself where civilizations clash and sometimes fuse. It is a powder keg awaiting a spark to ignite the Opium Wars.
River of Smoke Reviews
"The dialects he mimics are delightful, as are the vignettes and asides that make up the bulk of this book. But a stronger plot would have helped the reader navigate all the sampans and samosas, opium dreams and camellias." - Publishers Weekly
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River of Smoke Reader Reviews
Amitav Ghosh Author Biography
Amitav Ghosh is one of India's best-known writers. His books include The
Circle of Reason, The Shadow Lines, In An Antique Land,
Dancing in Cambodia, The Calcutta Chromosome, The Glass Palace,
Incendiary Circumstances and The Hungry Tide. His most recent
novel, Sea of Poppies, is the first volume of the Ibis Trilogy.
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