Parrot and Olivier in America
Parrot and Olivier in America has been shortlisted for the 2010 Man Booker Prize.From the two-time Booker Prize–winning author comes an irrepressibly funny new novel set in early nineteenth-century America.Olivier—an improvisation on the life of Alexis de Tocqueville—is the traumatized child of... show more
Parrot and Olivier in America has been shortlisted for the 2010 Man Booker Prize.From the two-time Booker Prize–winning author comes an irrepressibly funny new novel set in early nineteenth-century America.Olivier—an improvisation on the life of Alexis de Tocqueville—is the traumatized child of aristocratic survivors of the French Revolution. Parrot is the motherless son of an itinerant English printer. They are born on different sides of history, but their lives will be connected by an enigmatic one-armed marquis. When Olivier sets sail for the nascent United States—ostensibly to make a study of the penal system, but more precisely to save his neck from one more revolution—Parrot will be there, too: as spy for the marquis, and as protector, foe, and foil for Olivier.As the narrative shifts between the perspectives of Parrot and Olivier, between their picaresque adventures apart and together—in love and politics, prisons and finance, homelands and brave new lands—a most unlikely friendship begins to take hold. And with their story, Peter Carey explores the experiment of American democracy with dazzling inventiveness and with all the richness and surprise of characterization, imagery, and language that we have come to expect from this superlative writer.
Publish date: April 20th 2010
Pages no: 400
Edition language: English
This is the story of Parrot and Olivier, a British servant and a French aristocrat, and their travels in America in about 1830 - the relatively early days of democracy. It's funny, in a heavily ironic way, and well-written, and clever, with some interesting observations on the Nature of Democracy as...
Narrated by Humphrey Bower Alexis de TocquevilleI fell in love with this in a Mason & Dixon way and waited for it to transform into masterpiece, yet ultimately it never got to fly. Still enjoyed it to a high 3*, however I still feel Carey missed an oppurtunity to enthrall.
Well, this book had some serious ups and downs. On the negative, the book is frequently dull, and somewhat plodding, making meaningless and drab descriptions of early American life, amongst other things. It's hard to imagine how the author accomplished this considering how colorful the time is (I ha...
I actually would give this book a 3.5 rating if Goodreads had that rating available.This is "an improvisation on the life of Alexis de Tocqueville" as the book cover states. Olivier is a French aristocrat born right after the French Revolution. He travels to America with Parrot as his servant as w...