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On Beauty

by Zadie Smith

Howard Belsey, a Rembrandt scholar who doesn’t like Rembrandt, is an Englishman abroad and a long-suffering Professor at Wellington College.  He has been married for thirty years to Kiki, an American woman who no longer resembles the sexy activist she once was.

Their three children passionately pursue their own paths, and faced with the oppressive enthusiasms of his children, Howard feels that the first two acts of his life are over and he has no clear plans for the finale.  Then Jerome, Howard’s oldest son, falls for Victoria, the stunning daughter of the right-wing icon Monty Kipps.

Increasingly, the two families find themselves thrown together in a beautiful corner of America, enacting a cultural and personal war against the background of real wars that they barely register…

Winner of the 2006 Orange Prize for Fiction.



About Zadie Smith

Zadie Smith was born in north-west London in 1975, and continues to live both there and in New York, where she teaches on the Creative Writing programme at NYU. White Teeth was first published in 2000 and won the Guardian First Book Award, the Whitbread Prize for a First Novel, the James Tait Black Memorial Prize for Fiction, the WH Smith Book Award for New Talent, the Frankfurt eBook Award for Best Fiction Work Originally Published in 2000 and both the Commonwealth Writers First Book Award and Overall Commonwealth Writers Prize. Zadie Smith's other novels are The Autograph Man and On Beauty, which was shortlisted for The Man Booker Prize 2005 and won The Orange Prize for Fiction 2006. She is also author of a collection of essays, Changing my Mind, and the editor of a book of short stories, The Book of Other People.  

Other books by Zadie Smith



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