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Rudyard Kipling's Kim Paperback – October 6, 2009

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 190 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (October 6, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1449518575
  • ISBN-13: 978-1449518578
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.4 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,384,011 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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About the Author

Rudyard Kipling (30 December 1865 - 18 January 1936) was a British author and poet. Born in Bombay, British India, he is best known for his works of fiction The Jungle Book (1894) (a collection of stories which includes Rikki-Tikki-Tavi), Kim (1901) (a tale of adventure), many short stories, including The Man Who Would Be King (1888); and his poems, including Mandalay (1890), Gunga Din (1890), and If- (1910). He is regarded as a major "innovator in the art of the short story"; his children's books are enduring classics of children's literature; and his best works speak to a versatile and luminous narrative gift. Kipling was one of the most popular writers in English, in both prose and verse, in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The author Henry James said of him: "Kipling strikes me personally as the most complete man of genius (as distinct from fine intelligence) that I have ever known." In 1907, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature, making him the first English language writer to receive the prize, and to date he remains its youngest recipient. Among other honours, he was sounded out for the British Poet Laureateship and on several occasions for a knighthood, all of which he declined. Later in life Kipling came to be recognized (by George Orwell, at least) as a "prophet of British imperialism." Many saw prejudice and militarism in his works, and the resulting controversy about him continued for much of the 20th century. According to critic Douglas Kerr: "He is still an author who can inspire passionate disagreement and his place in literary and cultural history is far from settled. But as the age of the European empires recedes, he is recognized as an incomparable, if controversial, interpreter of how empire was experienced. That, and an increasing recognition of his extraordinary narrative gifts, make him a force to be reckoned with." (Wikipedia)

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By john purcell on March 24, 2013
Format: Paperback
Now in my 6th decade I finally had the chance to read this classic tale of Victorian views and strategies of the sub-continent. I wish we had read it in school instead of the modern tripe they force fed us in the Baltimore County schools. Some of it did not use capitalization and followed phonetic spelling. You can tell that Kipling wrote for serialization and a mass audience who liked a good yarn wrapped within their morality play, and for my money that is a formula for the ages.

Kim grows from a street-wise hustler to a full participant in the great game of political and military chess being played in India and Central Asia between the Queen and her Russian cousins. He is the orphaned son of an Irish career soldier who finds his way with the help of an Irish priest, British soldiers, Afghan horse traders, British capitalists, and a poor lost lama. Too bad they never hired Jackie Gleason to play the lama in the movie version, he would have won the Academy Award.

The lama reminds us all that life is a journey and there is great virtue and reward in seeking enlightment along the path. At the end he realizes that it does not matter if he never finds the river that was prophecied, more important was the path and those who crossed it and what he learned from them. Kim starts out as a messenger boy and disciple of the lama and eventually becomes a healer, junior intelligence officer, and wise man without the benefit of advanced age.

I did some research to understand how this book is viewed today. It clearly reflects the Victorian colonialism of its author, who also spent time in the sub-continent as a youth and man. I asked several well-educated young Indians and none had heard of it so it is clearly not a part of their culture today.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By John W. A. Palmer on March 7, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a boy of five. my favorite time of day was always the half-hour that my dad stole from his life to give me the world of books, and the marvellous sense that writing could immortalize human thought. The first books he read me were the "Jungle Books" followed by the epic of growing up in India that is Kim. Seventyfour years later, I can still recapture his voice --that is what Kim does for ms.
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