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English Passengers

A Novel

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Paperback published by Anchor (Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group)

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About This Book
In 1857 when Captain Illiam Quillian Kewley and his band of rum smugglers from the Isle of Man have most of their contraband confiscated by British Customs, they are forced to put their ship up for charter. The only takers are two eccentric Englishmen who want to embark for the other side of the globe. The Reverend Geoffrey Wilson believes the Garden of Eden was on the island of Tasmania. His traveling partner, Dr. Thomas Potter, unbeknownst to Wilson, is developing a sinister thesis about the races of men.

Meanwhile, an aboriginal in Tasmania named Peevay recounts his people’s struggles against the invading British, a story that begins in 1824, moves into the present with approach of the English passengers in 1857, and extends into the future in 1870. These characters and many others come together in a storm of voices that vividly bring a past age to life.
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In 1857 when Captain Illiam Quillian Kewley and his band of rum smugglers from the Isle of Man have most of their contraband confiscated by British Customs, they are forced to put their ship up for charter. The only takers are two eccentric Englishmen who want to embark for the other side of the globe. The Reverend Geoffrey Wilson believes the Garden of Eden was on the island of Tasmania. His traveling partner, Dr. Thomas Potter, unbeknownst to Wilson, is developing a sinister thesis about the races of men.

Meanwhile, an aboriginal in Tasmania named Peevay recounts his people’s struggles against the invading British, a story that begins in 1824, moves into the present with approach of the English passengers in 1857, and extends into the future in 1870. These characters and many others come together in a storm of voices that vividly bring a past age to life.
Product Details
Paperback (464 pages)
Published: January 16, 2001
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Imprint: Anchor
ISBN: 9780385497442
Other books byMatthew Kneale
  • Small Crimes in an Age of Abundance

    Small Crimes in an Age of Abundance
    A well-intentioned English family unwittingly becomes complicit in state violence while traveling through China. A ploddingly respectable London lawyer chances upon a stash of cocaine and realizes it offers the wealth and status he's always hungered for. A salesman in Africa gets caught up in a riot, and a Palestinian suicide bomber has a moment of self-doubt. Kneale transports readers across continents in a nanosecond, reaching to the heart of faraway societies with rare perceptiveness. With wry humor and razor-sharp satire, these twelve thought-provoking stories illuminate the moral uncertainty of our time. From the Trade Paperback edition.

    When We Were Romans

    When We Were Romans
    When We Were Romans is a haunting psychological novel and another masterful work from the author of the prize–winning English Passengers.Nine-year-old Lawrence is the man of his family. He watches over his mother and his willful little sister Jemima. He is the one who keeps order, especially when his mother decides they must leave their life in England behind because of threats from Lawrence's father. But their new life in Rome does not go as planned. Short of money and living off of his mother's old friends—all who seem to doubt her story—Lawrence soon realizes that things are not what they seem.

    Mr Foreigner

    Mr Foreigner
    Daniel Thayne, a young Englishman, finds himself trapped in Tokyo. Working illegally in a ramshackle language school, his passport lost, he is hustled towards marriage with Keiko, his Japanese girlfriend. In the gloom of the rainy season, Daniel's life takes on a nightmarish quality—his devious boss, Mrs. Chiba, refuses to pay him any money, a stranger accosts him with a mysterious special offer, a foul Australian takes him to an unspeakable whores' meeting place, and Samuel Echtbein, an American, is a constant thorn in Daniel's side. But most threatening of all are the Haradas, Keiko's family, who take control of his life. This title was originally published as Whore Banquets.

    When We Were Romans

    When We Were Romans
    A Novel
    When We Were Romans is a haunting psychological novel and another masterful work from the author of the prize–winning English Passengers.Nine-year-old Lawrence is the man of his family. He watches over his mother and his willful little sister Jemima. He is the one who keeps order, especially when his mother decides they must leave their life in England behind because of threats from Lawrence's father. But their new life in Rome does not go as planned. Short of money and living off of his mother's old friends—all who seem to doubt her story—Lawrence soon realizes that things are not what they seem. From the Trade Paperback edition.

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