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White Teeth Paperback – 12 June 2001

4.0 out of 5 stars 445 ratings

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Paperback, 12 June 2001
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Review

"A preternaturally gifted new writer [with] a voice that's street-smart and learned, sassy and philosophical all at the same time."-Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times

"Brilliant.... Smith is a master at detail...a postmodern Charles Dickens...[Smith's] rich storytelling and wicked wit are suited to the sights and smells of the world that England has inherited."-The Washington Post

"[A] vibrant, rollicking first novel about race and idenity...[Smith's] prickly wit is affectionate and poignant."-People

"[A] dazzling intergenerational first novel...wonderfully inventive...playful yet unaffected, mongrel yet cohesive, profound yet funny, vernacular yet lyrical. "-Los Angeles Times

"[A] marvel of a debut novel. . .Reminscent of both Salman Rushdie and John Irving, White Teeth is a comic, canny, sprawling tale, adeptly held together by Smith's literary sleight of hand."-Entertainment Weekly

"A magnificent and audacious novel, jampacked with memorable characters and challenging ideas."-The Atlanta Journal & Constitution

"Ambitious, earnest and irreverent. . . Smith has a real talent for comedy and a fond eye for human foibles."-The Wall Street Journal

"Wonderful.... Zadie Smith...possesses a more than ordinary share of talent."-USA Today

"Smith has an astonishing intellect. She writes sharp dialogue for every age and race-- and she's funny as hell."-Newsweek

"[
White Teeth] is, like the London it portrays, a restless hybrid of voices, tones, and textures...with a raucous energy and confidence."-The New York Times Book Review

"Fresh...spirited...this extravagant novel bursts with optimism about people, about language, and perhaps, above all, about novels and the joy, indeed the impertinence, of writing one."-The Philadelphia Inquirer

"Blissfully confident, wide-ranging and funny from the get-go, White Teeth...promises-and delivers-a wildly inventive journey into a fresh imagination."-Rocky Mountain News

"Brilliant.... Smith is a master at detail.... Like a postmodern Dickens, she has a flair for features, dress, dialogue, accents and human frailty."-The Miami Herald

"It's a treat to watch an immensely gifted young writer performing, for the very first time, such an admirably audacious and ambitious juggling act."-Elle

"Absolutely delicious.... Smith's voice is a perfect balance of tragedy and comedy."-The Tampa Tribune and Times

"Gently observant and generous in its judgments.... Filled with vibrant life."-The San Diego Union--Tribune

"Brilliant.... Bubbles and pops in its imaginative intensity."-The Baltimore Sun

From the Inside Flap

Zadie Smith's dazzling debut caught critics grasping for comparisons and deciding on everyone from Charles Dickens to Salman Rushdie to John Irving and Martin Amis. But the truth is that Zadie Smith's voice is remarkably, fluently, and altogether wonderfully her own.
At the center of this invigorating novel are two unlikely friends, Archie Jones and Samad Iqbal. Hapless veterans of World War II, Archie and Samad and their families become agents of England's irrevocable transformation. A second marriage to Clara Bowden, a beautiful, albeit tooth-challenged, Jamaican half his age, quite literally gives Archie a second lease on life, and produces Irie, a knowing child whose personality doesn't quite match her name (Jamaican for "no problem"). Samad's late-in-life arranged marriage (he had to wait for his bride to be born), produces twin sons whose separate paths confound Iqbal's every effort to direct them, and a renewed, if selective, submission to his Islamic faith. Set against London's racial and cultural tapestry, venturing across the former empire and into the past as it barrels toward the future, White Teeth revels in the ecstatic hodgepodge of modern life, flirting with disaster, confounding expectations, and embracing the comedy of daily existence.

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Reviewed in Australia on 2 November 2016
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Reviewed in Australia on 18 November 2016
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Julia Callister
2.0 out of 5 stars Don't believe the hype.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 9 January 2019
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5.0 out of 5 stars uncomfortable the tale made me...
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 16 November 2019
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3.0 out of 5 stars Epic, funny but aimless
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 15 March 2017
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Fi0
1.0 out of 5 stars I am afraid that I gave up half way
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 23 December 2019
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Miriam Haider
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting and filled with cultural importance
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 20 June 2019
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shall11
5.0 out of 5 stars White Teeth
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 5 June 2019
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Tracy
4.0 out of 5 stars Worth reading
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 18 July 2017
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5.0 out of 5 stars Just perfect
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 3 February 2018
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Emma Fitzgerald
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect contemporary fiction
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 12 August 2014
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DH
2.0 out of 5 stars Two Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 3 December 2015
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Pamanti
1.0 out of 5 stars Unfinished
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 25 August 2019
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Linus
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant synthesis of a Post-modern, Post-colonial world...
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 20 May 2013
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John Murphy
2.0 out of 5 stars Too long in the tooth
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 3 July 2001
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8 people found this helpful
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Tunmi
4.0 out of 5 stars Decent story, quite a long read at points
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 9 January 2017
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Rachel1
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliantly funny
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 4 August 2019
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