Sea of Poppies. HB: TPB: PB: Ebook: At the heart of this vibrant saga is a vast ship, the. Sea of Poppies (Ibis Trilogy) [Amitav Ghosh, Phil Gigante] on * FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. At the heart of this vibrant saga is an immense. Editorial Reviews. From Publishers Weekly. Starred Review. Diaspora, myth and a fascinating Sea of Poppies: Ibis Trilogy Book 1 – Kindle edition by Amitav Ghosh. Download it once and read it on your Kindle device, PC, phones or tablets.

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Dayanita Singh hide caption. Book Tour is a Web feature and podcast. Each week, we present leading authors of fiction and nonfiction as they read from and discuss their work. A colorful, enticing, yet dangerous image is ot by the title of Amitav Ghosh’s entrancing new novel, Sea of Poppies. That sea is mirrored by another: Both seas provide backdrop and engine for Ghosh’s tale, the first volume in a projected trilogy.

Sea of Poppies – Wikipedia

Sea of Poppies begins with the conversion of amotav former slave ship, the Ibis, into a transport vessel. The ship will henceforth carry opium bound for China and indentured servants to colonies like the British West Indies.

As the Ibis is outfitted, readers are led through the splendidly exciting cosmos of Calcutta. The bustling port city is the site of forbidden romance, disguise, deceit, courtroom dramas and ritual suttees the practice of burning recent widows.

The ship’s crew and passengers — opium factory workers, American sailors, French runaways, lascars, coolies, convicts, rajas and sahibs — reflect Calcutta’s cosmopolitan racial and socioeconomic swirl.

Theirs is a polyglot world, ringing with pidgin, Chinglish, Hinglish and the inimitable slang of seafarers. While the glories of their meticulously recreated lexicon polpies occasionally stump readers, the author has helpfully included a witty glossary supposedly compiled by one character.


‘Sea of Poppies’: An Epic Tale Of Opium And Empire

Ghosh, a former newspaper reporter who holds a doctorate in social anthropology from Oxford University, is bent on bringing the voices of India’s historical underclass to life. So he immerses readers in such doings as the workings of an opium factory and in the savage underpinnings of colonial economic engines like the East India Company.

The book has been glowingly reviewed as “breathtaking” The Independent”utterly involving” London Times and boasting both “a plot of Dickensian intricacy” The New York Times and “characters of force and imagination” The Guardian.

Ghosh is one of India’s best-known writers. 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: Her village was so far inland that the sea seemed as distant as the netherworld: It happened at the end of winter, smitav a year when the poppies were strangely slow to shed their petals: It was as if the snows of the high Himalayas had descended on the plains to await the arrival of Holi and its springtime profusion of colour.

The village in which Deeti lived was on the outskirts of the town of Ghazipur, some fifty miles east of Benares. Like all her neighbours, Deeti was preoccupied with the lateness of her poppy crop: Once his meal had been wrapped and packed, she broke off to pay a quick visit to her shrine room: Soon a squeaking wheel announced the arrival of the ox-cart that would take Hukam Singh to the factory where he worked, in Ghazipur, three miles away.


Although not far, the distance was too great for Hukam Singh to cover on foot, for he had been wounded in the leg while serving as a sepoy in a British regiment. The disability was not a,itav severe as to require crutches, however, and Hukam Singh was amiatv to make his way to the cart without assistance. Deeti followed a step behind, carrying his food and water, handing the cloth-wrapped package to him after he had climbed in.

Kalua, the driver of the ox-cart, was a giant of ghoeh man, but amjtav made no move to help his passenger and was careful to keep his face hidden from him: Now, on climbing into the back of the cart, the former sepoy sat facing to the rear, with his bundle balanced on his lap, to prevent its coming into direct contact amiitav any of the driver’s belongings.

Thus they would sit, driver and passenger, as the cart creaked along the road to Ghazipur — conversing amicably enough, but never exchanging glances. Excerpted from Sea of Poppies by Amitav Ghosh. Your purchase helps support NPR programming.

Accessibility links Skip to main content Keyboard shortcuts for audio player. The novel, the sixth from Amitav Ghosh, was shortlisted for the Booker Prize. Facebook Twitter Flipboard Email. January 7, 1: November 6, Books Featured In This Story.

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