Monthly Archives: May 2016
No. Of Pages: 184 Pages
My Rating: 4/5
Life And Times Of Michael K is a novel by South African writer J.M. Coetzee. The book was extolled in 1983 when it bagged the title of the prestigious Man Booker Prize. Another Jewel was brought to the book when Coetzee was awarded The Nobel Prize in Literature in 2003.
As the novel opens we learn about the protagonist’s (Michael k) deformity of a hare lip. His mother doesn’t allow him to play with the other boys of the society because of his aberrancy. Thus, we learn about his solitude life since childhood. In order to support his mother financially, he starts working as a Gardener. A war riot breaks out in the city and Michael decides to quit his job in order to fulfill his mother’s wish of taking her to her birth place: Prince Albert. On the way of their hard and tough journey, she dies in a hospital at Stellenbosch. She ironically dies without seeing her birthplace. Rest of the novel is all about the descriptions of the remaining journey of Michael without his mother and about all the endeavors he uses to gain supremacy over his calamitous fortune.
This is a novel which will compel you to ruminate hard about the price of human life on earth. I enjoyed reading the same as the theme on which the novel was written was entirely new for me and I always extol innovation in my reading life. I recommend it as the story will hammer you heart and will let you conceptualize the darkside of life. I rate it 4/5.
Here is the original review from the book. Hope it helps.
“In a South Africa torn by civil war, Michael K sets out to take his mother back to her rural home. On the way there she dies, leaving him alone in an anarchic world of brutal roving armies. Imprisoned, Michael is unable to bear confinement and escapes, determined to live with dignity. Life and Times of Michael K goes to the center of human experience – the need for an interior, spiritual life, for some connections to the world in which we live, and for purity of vision.”