The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet

By David Mitchell
(Random House Trade Paperbacks, Paperback, 9780812976366, 512pp.)

Publication Date: March 8, 2011

Other Editions of This Title: Paperback, Paperback, Hardcover, Hardcover, Paperback, Paperback

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Selected by Indie Booksellers for the Summer '11 Reading Group List
“Honest, forthright Jacob de Zoet, the nephew of a Dutch preacher, journeys to the Nagasaki of the late 18th and early 19th centuries, at the peak of Dutch trade with Japan. Through his eyes, we see this absorbing tale of the clash of cultures, replete with political machinations, plots within plots, graft and corruption, unrequited love, and the struggle of the 'good' to persevere throughout it all. A thoroughly satisfying read!”
-- Lynne Almeida, Spellbinder Books & Coffee Bar, Bishop, CA
Selected by Indie Booksellers for the July 2010 Indie Next List


Description

From the author of Cloud Atlas, now a major motion picture starring Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Susan Sarandon, and Hugh Grant, and directed by Lana and Andy Wachowski and Tom Tykwer

The year is 1799, the place Dejima in Nagasaki Harbor, the Japanese Empire’s single port and sole window onto the world, designed to keep the West at bay. To this place of devious merchants, deceitful interpreters, and costly courtesans comes Jacob de Zoet, a devout young clerk who has five years in the East to earn a fortune of sufficient size to win the hand of his wealthy fiancée back in Holland. But Jacob’s original intentions are eclipsed after a chance encounter with Orito Aibagawa, the disfigured midwife to the city’s powerful magistrate. The borders between propriety, profit, and pleasure blur until Jacob finds his vision clouded, one rash promise made and then fatefully broken—the consequences of which will extend beyond Jacob’s worst imaginings.

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About the Author

David Mitchell is the award-winning and bestselling author of The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet, Black Swan Green, Cloud Atlas, Number9Dream, and Ghostwritten. Twice shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, Mitchell was named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time in 2007. With KA Yoshida, Mitchell co-translated from the Japanese the international bestselling memoir The Reason I Jump. He lives in Ireland with his wife and two children.




NPR
Friday, Apr 1, 2011

Post-modern writer David Mitchell pulls off an old-fashioned yet action-packed tale in his fifth novel, The Thousand Autumns Of Jacob de Zoet. The story follows Jacob, a bookkeeper at an outpost of the Dutch East Indies Company, as he falls for a local midwife in early 19th century Japan. More at NPR.org

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NPR
Saturday, Aug 21, 2010

The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet is a complex, historical novel set on a Dutch trading post in late 18th century Japan. Author David Mitchell explains the extensive research that went into re-creating a bygone era. More at NPR.org

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NPR
Thursday, Aug 5, 2010

Post-modern writer David Mitchell pulls off an old-fashioned yet action-packed tale in his fifth novel, The Thousand Autumns Of Jacob de Zoet. The story follows Jacob, a bookkeeper at an outpost of the Dutch East Indies Company, as he falls for a local midwife in early 19th century Japan. More at NPR.org

NPR Audio Player Requires Flash Upgrade: Please upgrade your plug-in to view this content.

NPR
Wednesday, Jul 7, 2010

Post-modern wunderkind David Mitchell pulls off an old-fashioned yet action-packed tale in The Thousand Autumns Of Jacob de Zoet, a novel set in early 19th-century Japan. The story follows Jacob, a bookkeeper at an outpost of the Dutch East Indies Co., as he falls for a local midwife. More at NPR.org

NPR Audio Player Requires Flash Upgrade: Please upgrade your plug-in to view this content.




Praise For The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet

“A page-turner . . . Mitchell’s masterpiece; and also, I am convinced, a masterpiece of our time.”—Richard Eder, The Boston Globe

“An achingly romantic story of forbidden love . . . [David] Mitchell’s incredible prose is on stunning display. . . . A novel of ideas, of longing, of good and evil and those who fall somewhere in between [that] confirms Mitchell as one of the more fascinating and fearless writers alive.”—Dave Eggers, The New York Times Book Review (front-page review)

“The novelist who’s shown us fiction’s future has written a classic tale . . . an epic of sacrificial love, clashing civilizations and enemies who won’t rest until whole family lines have been snuffed out.”—Ron Charles, The Washington Post

“Comparisons to Tolstoy are inevitable, and right on the money.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
 
“[Mitchell’s] most emotionally engaging novel yet.”—Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times

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