Wednesday, February 14, 2024

'James' by Percival Everett

In 2022, Percival Everett's book - The Trees - was one of my favourites on the Booker Prize shortlist. I thought it had a strong chance of winning the award that year, but my guess turned out to be inaccurate.

Now, two years later - and many months away from a longlist announcement let alone a winner reveal - I have a strong feeling Everett is in with another chance.

The US author's latest novel - James - is due to be released later this spring. I have been able to get my hands on an advance copy of the title.

The novel is a - kind of - reworking of Mark Twain's The Adventure of Huckleberry Finn. Only. it is done through the eyes of Huck's friend: the slave named Jim.

James by Percival Everett

Part of the book contains some of the events from Twain's novel. However, it does so from Jim's first person narrative.

If you've read the original novel with Huck Finn as the main character you'll be aware there are parts in the story where Huck and Jim are separated. Well, that's where Everett creates his own spin-off to Jim's story creating some dark irony along the way.

By the end of the work, with Huck Finn and the titular character reunited, Everett creates a bombshell moment that could result in you rereading the Tom and Huck books with a totally different mind.

As I stated in my opening, I think James is award worthy. I loved it.

James by Percival Everett is set to be published on April 11 2024

Order James on Amazon UK

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