Publication Date: 06/02/2014 ISBN: 9780349139494 Category:

Old Filth

Jane Gardam

Publisher: Little Brown Book Group
Publication Date: 06/02/2014 ISBN: 9780349139494 Category:
B Format Paperback




Long ago, Old Filth was a Raj orphan – one of the many young children sent ‘Home’ from the East to be fostered and educated in England. Jane Gardam’s novel tells his story, from his birth in what was then Malaya to the extremities of his old age. In so doing, she not only encapsulates a whole period from the glory days of British Empire, through the Second World War, to the present and beyond, but also illuminates the complexities of the character known variously as Eddie, the Judge, Fevvers, Filth, Master of the Inner Temple, Teddy and Sir Edward Feathers.

Publisher Review

A magnificent, deeply moving and compassionate portrait of an era and a sentimental education * Daily Mail * Beautiful, vivid and defiantly funny * The Times * Typical excellence and compulsive readability…the miracle of “Old Filth” is that its hero eludes sociological or psychological pigeonholing. If he is a characteristic Raj orphan, he is also triumphantly his own man * New York Times * This novel is surely Gardam’s masterpiece. On the human level, it is one of the most moving fictions I have read for years…This is the rare novel that drives its reader forward while persistently waylaying and detaining by the sheer beauty and inventiveness of its style. One must savour every phrase. The marriage of quirky eccentricity and psychological authenticity is a Gardam technique, but here her cunning wit, moving deftly between scenes and eras, displays the tragedy of a vintage world forever passing away * Guardian * I recommend it wholeheartedly for its economy, breadth of narrative, and its insight, humour and pathos — Tracey Thorn * Mail on Sunday * What a spiky brilliant sledgehammer of a novel is Jane Gardam’s Old Filth * Patrick Ness * Jane Gardam, once shortlisted for the Booker Prize, is one of our finest novelists yet her work has yet to reach a wide readership. Like Samuel Beckett, she continually explores the corrosive loneliness of being alive and the courage it takes to continue…Readers will relish Old Filth for its compassionate wisdom, its comprehension of the way we lived then and live now, and for its absolute mastery of authorial tone – the product of a lifetime of experience and craft. It is a Rembrandt portrait of a novel. Don’t miss it. * Amanda Craig, New Statesman *

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