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Euphoria by [Lily King]
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Euphoria Kindle Edition

4.2 out of 5 stars 3,012 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

If the Tam weren’t a good fit, they would go to Australia. This was my last chance to get it right. And I could tell she was skeptical. But Teket had been many times to the Tam to visit his cousin there, and even if everything he told me about the culture and the beauty of the area were half true, it should satisfy this pair of choosy anthropologists. ‘I should have brought you here straightaway.’ I said, not entirely meaning to say it aloud. ‘It was selfish of me.’
She smiled, and told Fen not to kill us before we got there.
After several hours I saw the tributary we needed to take. Fen turned us toward it, letting in a little water on the port side. The tributary was a narrow ribbon of yellowish brown water. The sun disappeared and the air was cool on our faces.
‘Water’s low,’ Fen said.
‘You’re all right,’ I said, scanning for glimpses of the bottom.
The rains hadn’t come yet. The banks here rose high, walls of mud and coiling white roots. I watched carefully for the break Teket had told me about. He’d said it was soon after the turn. In a motorized boat it would come fast.
‘Here,’ I pointed right.
‘Here? Where?’
‘Right here.’ We were nearly past it.
The boat lurched, then slid into a tiny dark canal between what Teket called kopi, bushes that looked like freshwater mangroves.
‘You cannot be serious, Bankson,’ Fen said.
‘They’re fens, aren’t they?’ Nell said. ‘Fen among the fens.’
‘This is a fen? Jesus, help us,’ he said. The passage was wide enough for only one canoe. Branches scraped our arms and because we’d slowed down, insects came at us in clouds. ‘You could get bloody lost in here.’
Teket had told me there was only one path through. ‘Just follow the water.’
‘Like I’m going to do anything else. Fuck, the bugs are thick.’
We motored through this close corridors a long time, their trust in me weakening by the minute. I wanted to tell them everything I’d heard about the Tam, but best to have them arrive discouraged and skeptical.
‘Sure you have enough petrol for this?’ Fen asked.
And just then the passage opened up.
The lake was enormous, at least twelve miles across, the water jet black and ringed by bright green hills. Fen pulled up on the throttle to idle and we swayed there for a moment. Across the water was a long beach, and, mirroring it in the water twenty yards offshore, a bright white sandbar. Or what I thought was a sandbar, until all at once it lifted, broke apart, and thinned into the air.
‘Osprey,’ I said. ‘White osprey.’
‘Oh my, Bankson,’ Nell said. ‘This is glorious.’
--This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition. Review

An Amazon Best Book of the Month, June 2014: If I tell you that Euphoria is a novel loosely based on the life of the anthropologist Margaret Mead, your eyes will start to glaze over. Well, they shouldn’t--not when the novel is as wonderful as this one. Its both romantic and intelligent, a combination you don’t need to be a scientist to know doesn’t appear often in nature. Mead, a controversial character in real life, is here transmuted into the equally complex (and somewhat sickly) Nell Stone, who has made a reputation for herself by studying native tribes in New Guinea. Her husband, also an anthropologist, is more jealous than dutiful, although he does manage to make her feel inadequate for failing to produce a baby. Enter a charming-but-tortured third anthropologist, who at times seems to be unsure to which of his new friends he’s more attracted. Sparks of the emotional and sexual kind fly, but what’s even more interesting is the portrait of a growing friendship based at least partly on philosophy and attitudes toward “primitive” cultures. You know from the beginning that some bad things are going to happen, but it is to King’s great credit (and the fact that she changes some of the events in Mead’s life) that you can’t really guess what they are. This is the best kind of historical novel--the kind that sent me running to read more about its real-life inspiration. --Sara Nelson

--This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B00HWGLYHI
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Atlantic Monthly Press; Reprint edition (June 3, 2014)
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ June 3, 2014
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 1211 KB
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Screen Reader ‏ : ‎ Supported
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 273 pages
  • Lending ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.2 out of 5 stars 3,012 ratings

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4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5
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Keith Crawford
4.0 out of 5 stars Starts out clever, turns out to be cleverer.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on March 20, 2019
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5.0 out of 5 stars Engrossing
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5.0 out of 5 stars The title says it all...
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5.0 out of 5 stars Takes you to another world, another time
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Bateman Anne
5.0 out of 5 stars Well written, insightful set in Papua New Guinea.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 21, 2018
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