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Revisiting the terrain of her acclaimed novel NW, The Embassy of Cambodia is another remarkable work of fiction from Zadie Smith. The fact is, if we followed the history of every little country in the world -- in its dramatic as well as its quiet times -- we would have no space left in which to live our own lives or apply ourselves to our necessary tasks, never mind indulge in occasional pleasures, like swimming . . . First published in the New Yorker, The Embassy of Cambodia is a rare and brilliant story that takes us deep into the life of a young woman, Fatou, domestic servant to the Derawals and escapee from one set of hardships to another. Beginning and ending outside the Embassy of Cambodia, which happens to be located in Willesden, north-west London, Zadie Smiths absorbing, moving and wryly observed story suggests how the apparently small things in an ordinary life always raise larger, more extraordinary questions. Its range is lightly immense... a fiction of consequences both global and heart-rendingly intimate Guardian Smith serves up a smasher Independent Playful... unexpected and absolutely right... Skips to a beat all of its own Times Praise for NW: A triumph . . .modern London is explored in a dazzling portrait . . . every sentence sings Guardian Intensely funny, richly varied, always unexpected. A joyous, optimistic, angry masterpiece. No better English novel will be published this year Philip Hensher, Daily Telegraph Absolutely brilliant . . . So electrically authentic, it reads like surveillance transcripts Lev Grossman, TIMEShow more
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