Publication Date: 11/04/2024 ISBN: 9781035031238 Categories: ,


Percival Everett

Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Publication Date: 11/04/2024 ISBN: 9781035031238 Categories: ,



Selected as one of the top 12 reads of 2024 by The Times and Sunday Times

‘James has the potential to become a classic . . . thrilling, bold and profound’ – The Sunday Times

An enthralling and ferociously funny reimagining of Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, told from the perspective of the enslaved Jim. Written by Booker Prize-shortlisted Percival Everett, his novel Erasure is now released as the critically acclaimed and Oscar-winning film American Fiction, and James is set to be the literary event of 2024.

The Mississippi River, 1861. When the enslaved Jim overhears that he is about to be sold to a new owner in New Orleans and separated from his wife and daughter forever, he decides to hide on nearby Jackson’s Island until he can formulate a plan. Meanwhile, Huck Finn has faked his own death to escape his violent father who recently returned to town. Thus begins a dangerous and transcendent journey by raft along the Mississippi River, towards the elusive promise of the free states and beyond. As James and Huck begin to navigate the treacherous waters, each bend in the river holds the promise of both salvation and demise.

With rumours of a brewing war, James must face the burden he carries: the family he is desperate to protect and the constant lie he must live. And together, the unlikely pair must face the most dangerous odyssey of them all . . .

From the shadows of Huck Finn’s mischievous spirit, Jim emerges to reclaim his voice, defying the conventions that have consigned him to the margins.

‘Gripping, painful, funny, horrifying . . . a consummate performance to the last’ – The Observer

‘This is the work of an American master at the peak of his powers’ – Financial Times

‘Both a page-turner and a profound meditation on the ramifications of slavery and self-hood . . . Luminous’ – TLS

Publisher Review

Percival Everett is a giant of American letters, and James is a canon-shatteringly great book. Unforgiving and compassionate, beautiful and brutal, a tragedy and a farce, this brilliant novel rewrites literary history to let us hear the voices it has long suppressed — Hernan Diaz, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Trust James is funny and horrifying, brilliant and riveting. In telling the story of Jim instead of Huckleberry Finn, Percival Everett delivers a powerful, necessary corrective to both literature and history. I found myself cheering both the writer and his hero. Who should read this book? Every single person in the country — Ann Patchett, bestselling author of Tom Lake Pure brilliance. Funny, wise, gracious; this may be Everett’s best book yet — Bonnie Garmus, bestselling author of Lessons in Chemistry Percival Everett is an audacious, beguiling American master, whose wild trajectory has reached astonishing highs in the past decade. Now comes James, which enlists and devours not only Mark Twain’s novel but aspects of Melville, Ellison, and even Kafka to make an irrevocable invention into the canon. Everett is simply playing this game at a higher level, and it is the most serious game imaginable — Jonathan Lethem, author of Motherless Brooklyn The unsung Jonathan Swift of modern American fiction * The Times * It’s about time this extraordinary American writer got some credit this side of the Pond — Sunday Times on The Trees A powerful wake-up call, as well as an act of literary restitution — Guardian on The Trees Satire in the great tradition of Swift by way of South Park — Daily Telegraph on The Trees There’s nobody else quite like him, with his mash of ideas, chaos, satire and frivolity — Financial Times on Dr No Clever, funny and mercilessly satirical. — The Times on Dr No

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