BOOKS

Stringer

Anjan Sundaram

RRP: £12.99

1 May 2014

Published by Atlantic Books

ISBN: 9781782392477

RRP: £8.99

1 May 2014

Published by Atlantic Books

ISBN: 9781782392484

Written with startling beauty and acuity, Stringer is an account of a year and a half that Anjan Sundaram spent in the Congo working on the bottom rung of the Associated Press. It was an intense period that would take him deep into the shadowy city of Kinshasa, to the dense rainforests that still evoke Conrad’s vision, and to the heart of Africa’s great war, culminating in the historic and violent multiparty elections of 2006. Along the way he would go on a joyride with Kinshasa’s feral children, fend off its women desperate for an escape route, and travel with an Indian businessman hunting for his fortune.

REVIEWS

You have found a rare talent in Anjan Sundaram. I loved his coming of age, not just professionally but intimately and privately, set against the Congo morass. It takes a brave writer to admit to utter bewilderment, so I salute not just his honesty but his spirit.Tim Butcher, author of the Sunday Times bestseller, Blood River

Anjan Sundaram's prose is so luscious, whether he's writing about mathematics or colonial architecture or getting mugged, that the words come alive and practically dance on the page. Stringer is first book, about a year-long journey to Congo; reading it made me feel like I'd follow him anywhere in the world.Barbara Demick, winner of the Samuel Johnson Prize for Nothing to Envy

With an incisive intellect and senses peeled raw, Sundaram takes us on a mesmerizing journey through the vibrant shambles of modern Congo. This is that rare work of reportage that achieves true literary greatness, and it can stand proudly next to V.S. Naipaul or Ryzard Kapuscinski. Richard Grant

What a debut! It's not often one reads a book of reportage from a difficult foreign country with such fever-dream immediacy, such tense intelligence, and such an artful gift for story-telling. Here is a commanding new writer who comes to us with the honesty, the intensity, and the discerning curiosity of the young Naipaul. Pico Iyer

In lucid and searing prose, and with bracing self-awareness, Anjan Sundaram explores a country that has long been victimized by the ever-renewed greeds of the modern world. Stringer is one of those very rare books of journalism that transcend their genre - and destiny as ephemera - and become literature. Pankaj Mishra

Congo, with all its mystery, its beauty, its darkness its poverty, its wealth, its warmth and its violence came alive under the pen of this debutante author... As the book races towards the finish, you wonder whether you were reading a fascinating fictional drama set in a troubled land but you realize it's all too true and that's what makes this book quite scary and yet beautiful.India Today