Aasif Mandvi brought Rushdie's book alive. Having already read many of Rushdie's books I was reticent to listen to one thinking it would not have the same feeling. I was happy to find that Mandvi was an addition to the telling. The story has all the best of a Rushdie story, humor, irony, history and human drama told with wit and insight. It is the one audio book I have listened to more then once. If Mandvi narrated all his books I would purchase them all again in audio format just here him read them.
“A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies…The man who never reads lives only one.” (George R. R. Martin)
The writing. I thought the prose was excellent.
Probably the Iron Mullah – he’s an excellent caricature. The title character was also very well done.
No, I haven't.
I'd have to go with India Ophuls.
This is the first Rushdie book that I have either read or listened to and I was highly impressed with his writing. Also, the slow transformation of the title character into a terrorist was handled very well.
Rushdie is undeniably a good writer. His style and prose is excellent, and his characters and plot exceedingly well crafted. I have a great deal of respect for him as an author. But for some reason, this novel just doesn't do it for me. It certainly picked up in the last quarter, but I had to slog through for ages before reaching the point where I wanted to keep reading. I want to read another of his books, perhaps Midnight's Children or The Satanic Verses, seeing this was my first Rushdie, but after reading this one, I just can't bring myself to dive into another Rushdie just yet.
There are so many things wrong with this book that I'm having problems organizing which to talk about first. There is no climax. There's lots of death and killing and what should be acction, but no actual climax. I don't care one way or another about any of these people either. All the characters are the same. They speak in the same unnatural- for either Americans or Brits- way. They all seem to suffer from the same sorts of fatalism. The only character who seemed genuine was a minor actor who was shallow and unlikeable, but at least he was real. There's also a lot of loose ends. I understand that you can't make on-going geo-political problems wrap up nicely, but something could end. Anything would have been helpful. Finally, as someone studying the law I can say without reservation that the most important courtroom scene would never have happened. Finally, I'm not into magical realism. If you are, this won't bother you, but I dislike fortune telling and telepathy being set out as a part of the real world in which we all live lives free from such weird happenings.
Great character development. The historical and geographical settings are wonderfully presented. My first book by this author, will definitely not be the last.
Shalimar is simply brilliant. Rushdie in his Rushdie style does exceedingly good. You may find novel reviews somewhere else, but this one I am writing specially for Narration (Narrated by Aasif Mandvi) and the director team.
Rusdie packs sentences densely. But the narration -inspite of this difficulty is great. The character voices are consistent.
As much I enjoed the story, the narration team also gets great appreciation for laying it out in the best manner.
This is the first Rushdie book I have read. He is most certainly a brilliant author, his use of language is innovative, interesting and just excellent throughout. It is a joy to listen to. His knowledge of the country and culture described is evident throughout the story.
Where I have some problems is with his version of the facts of what happened in Kashmir, I found it somewhat one-sided. Having said that, the book is still well worth reading.
I have always had difficulty reading Rushdie's novels although I admire him as a public speaker. Hearing the book read aloud was very different. It gave the lyricism and satire a more natural cadence. Very interesting book in terms of understanding many attitudes that continue to impact headlines today.
The narrator is perfect. Great rhythm, deep knowledge of the words in their context, for a very powerful book. This is one of the books that is better heard than read, because of the large number of unusual and foreign words
I agree with a previous reviewer: all the major characters are self-absorbed. It's hard to care about them. My major objection to the novel is the excessive reliance on the back-story of inconsequential characters that impede the story line rather than contribute to it. Too often they were digression that irritated rather than enlightened. Like India's potato woman, did we really need to know all about her and her daughters to understand her excentricity or attachment to India?
Kudos to the narrator. He was superb even if he did stumble over some words a few times.