Author: Amitav Ghosh
Publisher: John Murray
The Back of the Book: On an old slaving ship named the Ibis, fate has thrown together a motley crew of sailors, coolies and convicts, including a bankrupt raja, a French runaway and a widowed opium framer. As their old family ties are washed away, they come to view themselves as jahaj-bhais or ship-brothers. Set against the backdrop of the Opium Wars, this unlikely dynasty is what makes Sea of Poppies so breathtakingly alive - a masterpiece from one of the world's finest novelists.
Why I Chose this Book: I saw this reduced to half price in my local bookstore last week and resolved to buy it as soon as I could as I've enjoyed Mr Ghosh's previous books so much. I think The Hungry Tide is one of the best books I've ever read - I can still recall the atmosphere it created in my mind and it's been years since I picked it up.