The Lives of Others

Author(s): Neel Mukherjee


This book was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize; and shortlisted for the Costa Novel Award. It was the winner of the Encore Award. It is longlisted for the DSC Prize for South Asian Literature. It is longlisted for the Impac Prize. Calcutta, 1967. Unnoticed by his family, Supratik has become dangerously involved in extremist political activism. Compelled by an idealistic desire to change his life and the world around him, all he leaves behind before disappearing is a note. At home, his family slowly begins to unravel. Poisonous rivalries grow, the once-thriving family business implodes and destructive secrets are unearthed. And all around them the sands are shifting as society fractures, for this is a moment of turbulence, of inevitable and unstoppable change. "Deeply moving." (Amitav Ghosh). "Terrifies and delights." (A S Byatt, Guardian). "Unforgettable." (Daily Telegraph).


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An epic saga telling the story of a Bengali family in Calcutta - exploring a family that is decaying as the society around it fractures, and one young man who tries to reimagine his place in the world.

Shortlisted for Man Booker Prize for Fiction 2014.

"Neel Mukherjee has written an outstanding novel: compelling, compassionate and complex, vivid, musical and fierce." Rose Tremain "A devastating portrayal of a decadent society and the inevitably violent uprising against it, in the tradition of such politically charged Indian literature as the work of Prem Chand, Manto and Mulk Raj Anand. It is ferocious, unsparing and brutally honest." Anita Desai "The Lives of Others is searing, savage and deeply moving: an unforgettably vivid picture of a time of turmoil." Amitav Ghosh ( "Very ambitious and very successful. ... One of Mukherjee's great gifts is precisely his capacity to imagine the lives of others. ... Neel Mukherjee terrifies and delights us simultaneously" -- A S Byatt Guardian "Masterful ... His fierce intelligence and sophisticated storytelling combine to produce an unforgettable portrait of one family riven by the forces of history and their own desires." -- Patrick Flanery Daily Telegraph

Neel Mukherjee was born in Calcutta. His first novel, A Life Apart (2010), won the Vodafone-Crossword Award in India, the Writers' Guild of Great Britain Award for best fiction, and was shortlisted for the inaugural DSC Prize for South Asian Literature. This is his second novel. He lives in London.

General Fields

  • : 9780099554486
  • : Vintage Publishing
  • : Vintage
  • : 0.369
  • : October 2014
  • : 198mm X 129mm X 33mm
  • : United Kingdom
  • : February 2015
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : 544
  • : 115
  • : Paperback
  • : Neel Mukherjee