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The Underground Railroad: Winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction 2017 Paperback – 9 August 2016

4.4 out of 5 stars 11,867 ratings

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Product details

  • Publisher : Fleet; 1st edition (9 August 2016)
  • Language : English
  • Paperback : 352 pages
  • ISBN-10 : 0708898378
  • ISBN-13 : 978-0708898376
  • Dimensions : 23.4 x 2.4 x 15.5 cm
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.4 out of 5 stars 11,867 ratings

Product description

Review

It has invaded both my sleeping and waking thoughts . . . Each character feels alive with a singular humanity . . . Whitehead is on a roll, the reviews have been sublime (Bim Adewunmi Guardian)

An engrossing and harrowing novel (Sunday Times)

[A] brutal, vital, devastating novel...This is a luminous, furious, wildly inventive tale that not only shines a bright light on one of the darkest periods of history, but also opens up thrilling new vistas for the form of the novel itself (Alex Preston Observer)

This thrilling tale of escape from a deep south plantation takes in terror, beauty and the history of human tragedy..This uncanny novel never attempts to deliver a message - instead it tells one of the most compelling stories I have ever read. Cora's strong, graceful hands touch on the greatest tragedies of our history (Cynthia Bond, Guardian)

It's so good it's hard to praise it without whipping out the cliches: it's an elegant, devastating powerhouse of a book, following a young black woman all over America as she tries to escape the horrors of slavery. When it was published with Oprah's imprimatur, in August, it was universally acclaimed. It deserved it (Michelle Dean Guardian)

One of the best, if not the best, book I've read this year . . . Whitehead never exploits his subject matter, and in fact it's the sparseness of the novel that makes it such a punch in the gut (Sarah Shaffi Stylist)

My book of the year by some distance...It's a profound and important novel, but more than anything it's an absurdly good read, gripping you in its tightly wound plot, astonishing you with its leaps of imagination. If Whitehead doesn't win every prize going next year, I'll appear on Saturday Review in my underpants (Alex Preston Observer, Best Fiction of 2016)

Whitehead is a superb storyteller . . . [he] brilliantly intertwines his allegory with history . . . writing at the peak of his game . . . Whitehead's achievement is truly remarkable: by giving the Underground Railroad a new mythology, he has found a way of confronting other myths, older and persistent, about the United States. His book cannot have enough readers (Telegraph)

It is an extraordinary novel, a rich, confident work that will deservedly win - on the basis of literary merit as well as moral purpose . . . History and human experience as well as an artist's obligation to tell the truth have shaped a virtuoso novel that should be read by every American as well as readers across the world. And it will be, it should be (Eileen Battersby Irish Times)

An utterly transporting piece of storytelling (Alex Heminsley The Pool)

From the Publisher

Colson Whitehead is a multi-award winning and bestselling author whose works include The Nickel Boys, The Underground Railroad, The Noble Hustle, Zone One, Sag Harbor, The Intuitionist, John Henry Days, Apex Hides the Hurt and a collection of essays, The Colossus of New York. He is one of only four novelists to win the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction twice and is a recipient of MacArthur and Guggenheim fellowships. For The Underground Railroad, Whitehead won the National Book Award, the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, the Arthur C. Clarke Award for Fiction, the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence and was longlisted for the Booker Prize. He was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for a second time for The Nickel Boys, which also won the George Orwell Prize for Political Fiction and The Kirkus Prize. The Underground Railroad has been adapted as an Amazon Prime TV series, produced and directed by the Academy Award winning director Barry Jenkins, and will be broadcast in May 2021. He lives with his family in New York City.

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4.4 out of 5 stars
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11,867 global ratings
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Top reviews from Australia

Reviewed in Australia on 3 October 2018
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Reviewed in Australia on 13 November 2017
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Top reviews from other countries

Ian Thumwood
5.0 out of 5 stars An American classic
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 10 December 2018
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32 people found this helpful
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Norman Housley
5.0 out of 5 stars An exceptional novel on a hugely important topic
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 19 August 2017
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28 people found this helpful
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CJC
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding, poetic and powerful
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 11 October 2017
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18 people found this helpful
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Alan and Jan
3.0 out of 5 stars Does this book trivialise slavery and in a way insult all those who suffered?
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 13 July 2018
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7 people found this helpful
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Janie U
2.0 out of 5 stars Unengaging and needed more context
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 26 November 2019
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4 people found this helpful
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