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‘Our book of the year – and maybe of Ondaatje’s career’ Daily Telegraph Books of the Year
**LONGLISTED FOR THE MAN BOOKER PRIZE 2018**
** FINALIST FOR THE 2018 LOS ANGELES TIMES BOOK PRIZE**
An elegiac, dreamlike novel set in post-WW2 London about memory, family secrets and lies, from the internationally acclaimed author of The English Patient
`The past never remains in the past…’
London, 1945. The capital is still reeling from the war. 14-year-old Nathaniel and his older sister Rachel are abandoned by their parents who leave the country on business, and are left in the dubious care of a mysterious figure named The Moth. Nathaniel is introduced to The Moth’s band of criminal misfits and is caught up in a series of teenage misadventures, from smuggling greyhounds for illegal dog racing to lovers’ trysts in abandoned buildings at night.
But is this eccentric crew really what and who they claim to be? And most importantly, what happened to Nathaniel’s mother? Was her purported reason for leaving true? What secrets did she hide in her past? Years later Nathaniel, now an adult, begins to slowly piece together using the files of intelligence agencies – and through reality, recollection and imagination – the startling truths of puzzles formed decades earlier.
`A novel of shadowy brilliance’ The Times
`Fiction as rich, as beautiful, as melancholy as life itself, written in the visionary language of memory’ Observer
`Ondaatje brilliantly threads the mysteries and disguises and tangled loyalties and personal yearnings of the secret world…and has constructed something of real emotional and psychological heft, delicate melancholy and yet, frequently, page-turning plottiness. I haven’t read a better novel this year.’ Telegraph
"Place your bets - with this glorious new book... Ondaatje could be in line for another Booker." -- Anthony Cummins * Metro * "Warlight sucked me in deeper than any novel I can remember... fiction as rich, as beautiful, as melancholy as life itself." -- Alex Preston * Observer * "Ondaatje's first novel in seven years mesmerizes from start to finish." -- Hephzibah Anderson * Mail on Sunday * "Ondaatje's spare and evocative prose perfectly captures the crumbled austerity of post-war London... this is easily his most satisfying and seductive novel in years." -- Richard Strachan * Herald Scotland * "Compulsively and grippingly readable. In fact I read it first at a gallop, enthralled by the image of a city and a world distorted and all but destroyed by war, and then again slowly, determined to savour the details and extract as much as I could from it. Much remained puzzling on this second reading, but two things are clear: Michael Ondaatje is a marvellous writer, and Warlight is a novel which will continue to play in the reader's imagination." -- Allan Massie * Scotsman * "Ondaatje [is] such a thrilling writer... I loved [Warlight]." -- Johanna Thomas-Corr * Evening Standard * "[Warlight is] so cunningly assembled... leaner than The English Patient and its focus is tighter, a searchlight's focus." -- Anna Mundow * Washington Post * "Absorbing... this is a welcome return from a literary master who knows how to take human experience and cast it elegantly onto the page." -- Christian Lisseman * Big Issue * "[A] gripping read from a grandmaster." -- Hilary A. White * Irish Independent * "A dark adult fairy tale where nothing is as it seems... Ondaatje's magical mystery tour makes for an exceptionally entertaining literary journey." -- Arminta Wallace * Irish Times *
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