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White Teeth

A Novel
Smith, Zadie (Book - 2001 )
Average Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5.
White Teeth


Item Details

From the Publisher: On New Year's morning, 1975, Archie Jones sits in his car on a London road and waits for the exhaust fumes to fill his Cavalier Musketeer station wagon. Archie-working-class, ordinary, a failed marriage under his belt-is calling it quits, the deciding factor being the flip of a 20-pence coin. When the owner of a nearby halal butcher shop (annoyed that Archie's car is blocking his delivery area) comes out and bangs on the window, he gives Archie another chance at life and sets in motion this richly imagined, uproariously funny novel. Epic and intimate, hilarious and poignant, White Teeth is the story of two North London families-one headed by Archie, the other by Archie's best friend, a Muslim Bengali named Samad Iqbal. Pals since they served together in World War II, Archie and Samad are a decidedly unlikely pair. Plodding Archie is typical in every way until he marries Clara, a beautiful, toothless Jamaican woman half his age, and the couple have a daughter named Irie (the Jamaican word for "no problem"). Samad-devoutly Muslim, hopelessly "foreign"-weds the feisty and always suspicious Alsana in a prearranged union. They have twin sons named Millat and Magid, one a pot-smoking punk-cum-militant Muslim and the other an insufferable science nerd. The riotous and tortured histories of the Joneses and the Iqbals are fundamentally intertwined, capturing an empire's worth of cultural identity, history, and hope. Zadie Smith's dazzling first novel plays out its bounding, vibrant course in a Jamaican hair salon in North London, an Indian restaurant in Leicester Square, an Irish poolroom turned immigrant cafe, a liberal public school, a sleek science institute. A winning debut in every respect, White Teeth marks the arrival of a wondrously talented writer who takes on the big themes-faith, race, gender, history, and culture-and triumphs.
Authors: Smith, Zadie
Title: White teeth
a novel
Publisher: New York :, Vintage Books,, 2001, c2000
Edition: 1st Vintage International ed
Characteristics: 448 p. ;,21 cm
Statement of Responsibility: Zadie Smith
Notes: "Originally published ... by Hamish Hamilton, London, and subsequently ... by Random House, Inc., New York, in 2000"--T.p. verso
Contents: Acknowledgments
Archie 1974, 1945
1: Peculiar second marriage of Archie Jones
2: Teething trouble
3: Two families
4: Three coming
5: Root canals of Alfred Archibald Jones and Samad Miah Iqbal
Samad 1984, 1857
6: Temptation of Samad Iqbal
7: Molars
8: Mitosis
9: Mutiny!
10: Root canals of Mangal Pande
Irie 1990, 1907
11: Mis education of Irie Jones
12: Canines: the ripping teeth
13: Root canals of Hortense Bowden
14: More English than the English
15: Chalfenism versus Bowdenism
Magid, Millat, And Marcus 1992, 1999
16: Return of Magid Mahfooz Murshed Mubtasim Iqbal
17: Crisis talks and eleventh-hour tactics
18: End of history versus the last man
19: Final space
20: Of mice and memory
Summary: From the Publisher: On New Year's morning, 1975, Archie Jones sits in his car on a London road and waits for the exhaust fumes to fill his Cavalier Musketeer station wagon. Archie-working-class, ordinary, a failed marriage under his belt-is calling it quits, the deciding factor being the flip of a 20-pence coin. When the owner of a nearby halal butcher shop (annoyed that Archie's car is blocking his delivery area) comes out and bangs on the window, he gives Archie another chance at life and sets in motion this richly imagined, uproariously funny novel. Epic and intimate, hilarious and poignant, White Teeth is the story of two North London families-one headed by Archie, the other by Archie's best friend, a Muslim Bengali named Samad Iqbal. Pals since they served together in World War II, Archie and Samad are a decidedly unlikely pair. Plodding Archie is typical in every way until he marries Clara, a beautiful, toothless Jamaican woman half his age, and the couple have a daughter named Irie (the Jamaican word for "no problem"). Samad-devoutly Muslim, hopelessly "foreign"-weds the feisty and always suspicious Alsana in a prearranged union. They have twin sons named Millat and Magid, one a pot-smoking punk-cum-militant Muslim and the other an insufferable science nerd. The riotous and tortured histories of the Joneses and the Iqbals are fundamentally intertwined, capturing an empire's worth of cultural identity, history, and hope. Zadie Smith's dazzling first novel plays out its bounding, vibrant course in a Jamaican hair salon in North London, an Indian restaurant in Leicester Square, an Irish poolroom turned immigrant cafe, a liberal public school, a sleek science institute. A winning debut in every respect, White Teeth marks the arrival of a wondrously talented writer who takes on the big themes-faith, race, gender, history, and culture-and triumphs.
ISBN: 0375703861
9780375703867
Branch Call Number: FICTION SMITH
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Report This Jan 25, 2014
  • shizuku_san rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

I was surprised at how much the author could trace political and social changes through bread! It was pretty interesting, although I felt like the connection between his research and his conclusion wasn't as clear as it could have been.

Report This Jul 12, 2012
  • smilegirl24 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

This book pulled me in early and didn't release me until the very last page. An incredibly detailed, funny, and thoughtful analysis of the position of immigrants in England, White Teeth manages to approach a difficult subject with humor and without offensiveness. Highly reccomended.

Report This Feb 03, 2012
  • carmenweiss rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

I read this pretty quickly, but don't remember enjoying it all that much.

Report This Oct 01, 2009
  • lilybelle rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

A perfect novel on imperfect characters living in an imperfect world.

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