One of the most enjoyable audiobooks I have heard happens to be Samantha Bond's reading of DH Lawrence's Lady Chatterley's Lover. This bok could have reached similar heights if only the publisher had hired a proper Indian actor like Nana Patekar, Anupam Kher, or Sayeed Jaffrey to read it. This version of the audiobook is read by an English actor with immaculate British accent who mangles most of the Indian names and sounds distinctly uncomfortable in the trade mark Rushdie English, where characters develop through the nuances of Indian idiom and diction and what is locally known as Bombaiya hindi. Imagine a British actor reading EL Doctorow's Ragtime or Mark Twain's Tom Sawyer !!
Saleem Sinai, of course, for his transformation as the book progresses.
Hire any good Indian actor to read a book about India called midnight's children. I am not talking about hiring another British-born Ox-Bridge accented Indian.
Ragtime for India. Rushdie did what EL Doctorow did to US history in his novel, Ragtime.
Any chance we can get a good reader with proper regional Indian accents to redo this book as well as Rushdie's short stories "East West" and Satanic verses into decent audiobooks ? This can be a good movie tie in with recent release of the movie of Midnight's children.
I am a fan of both fiction and non-fiction with a recent bias toward fiction, possibly due to my history background. ]
The narrator put a spin on this book that I think may have taken away from it's impact. I listened to sections and then reflected on them and decided that if I had just read them my self I would have put a different emphasis on things and it would have had a far greater impact. So I stopped listening at a little over half way through.
I noticed that passages that should have been funny, weren't. Wrong pace, wrong emphasis?
I can't say as I haven't finished it.
The characters are very well written, something the narrator couldn't take away from. I have high hopes for this book.
Having read and listened to Salman Rushdie, I would only choose to read his work and I have read many. The mixture of fact and fantasy is not for everyone but I enjoy his work thoroughly.
I have reviewed this book as an audible. Now I will go back and read it.
Make sure you have long periods to listen, uninterrupted.
My commute to work used to be over an hour; now, it is 25 minutes which is too short a time for the richness and complexity of Rushdie's literary style.
Compelling Magical Realism
Although this story is set in the very real history of India and Pakistan, I most enjoyed the fantasy aspects that drove the story onward.
The size of this volume is daunting. I would never have been able to pick up and plow through this book. To hear Gregory read it to me got me through it. It took me a few minutes to adjust my ear to his accent, but once I got it, he was easy to listen to. In following along with the book, my wife did find a couple reading errors, but only one changed the meaning of the sentence.
These were characters I enjoyed reading about, but would not want to associate with. They all seemed very foreign and eccentric to me.
Rushdie has written a marvelous story that keeps you going throughout the book. I knew nothing of the history that is the setting for this story, so that was interesting. As much as I enjoyed the fantasy throughout the book, I found his images of the wars a bit disturbing, which just shows what a powerful writer he is. The book is definitely worth the time, and now I look forward to seeing the movie.
Lyndam Gregory is pitch perfect in his reading. He total inhabits the many characters presented in the novel.
I would - and do - wholeheartedly recommend it!
There are SOOOO many simply fabulous, unique, entertaining characters, but, as it is told from the perspective of Saleem, and he is funny, smart, clever, confused, curious and every other appealing adjective you can think of, he wins my deepest affection.
No, but you can bet I will now! He performs this book as if he were channeling it - as if he were creating it. His different voices are wonderful. I really can't say enough about how terrific he is, so I won't even try.
Again, Saleem. Though, again, the 'pages' are peopled with such rich, fleshy, funny, sad characters that one could easily compile a list.
I really cannot recommend this highly enough. It is a world to get lost in - a world that often feels more real than the real world. I had heard so much about Rushdie's masterful writing, but I could not have imagined just how worthy he is of that praise. This book will last forever and I know I will listen again and again. Don't pass it up!
This man is one of the best narrators I've heard. He has a good dramatic voice and an understanding of English AND the Indian "varieties." His portrayal of women is as good as that of men, and he gave the different characters their own distinct voices.
Tell us about yourself! I am a French woman and live in Paris. I love to read - I read almost EVERYTHING! I like also to speak English
Midnight’s Children – A Book Review
It is really challenging for me to review and sum up this massive, multi-layered, multi-dimensional book. I would like to say also that this is the most complex book that I have read in the few past years. Was it a great book? The answer is “YES”! Would I read another book from the same author? “YES”.
The plot revolves around Saleem Sinai’s birth and life. Saleem, the narrator and protagonist of the novel, is born on the stroke of midnight at the exact moment when India achieved Independence. This accident of birth gives him (and other children born during that magical midnight hour), unique, special gifts. Saleem’s gift is his “nose” that allowed him at first to go into people’s heads and know what they are thinking. He is also able to telepathically communicate with the other midnight children forming a kind of “ham” radio link of sorts with the rest of the children. Now after an eventful life, he is breaking into pieces, literally falling apart, and he wants to narrate his story to his lover before he dies. His identity, however, is switched at birth. As a result, he is raised by a prosperous family in Bombay, while his counterpart and future rival, Shiva, is raised in poverty.
The book is about Saleem, but it is also about India because for some magical, inexplicable reasons, Saleem and India destiny are intertwined with each other. The book opens up with Saleem’s grand parents in Kashimir, and then his parents and finally Saleenm and other midnight’s children.
I won’t say too much because I don’t want to spoil it for you, but keep in mind that there are layers upon layers of fantasy/historical dates and moments etc.
Reading this book was like watching both a fantasy movie combined with an historical movie. I really loved it. It was hard to start off the book and get into that but after the first 200 pages I started to enjoy it and therefore was unable to put it down. There are so many characters walking in and out of the story. The book is overly detailed you might get lost, but no worries about each small detail just keep going and at the end you’ll see everything will fall into place and be clear in your mind. This is definitely a book I highly recommend for those of you who likes both fantasy/historic.
Everything!!!!!!He makes it the characters sound real
When Saleem's parent find out that Saleem is not theit biological son. I felt so sorry for the mother.
I have edited 38 national best sellers and had a writing fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities.
I was not familiar with Salman Rushdie's work. I leaped to the conclusion that Midnight's Children would be a dark, serious book because of the title of Rushdie's Satanic Verses and his being the target of a death threat. Was I surprised when I started listening to this imaginative, funny, whimsical book!
The narrator is amazing. I know some reviewers have complained that his pronunciation of certain words isn't correct, but I wouldn't know if it is or isn't. All I can say is that he is an amazing actor. He nails the accents, uses different intonations for various characters' voices, and enhances my comprehension and enjoyment immeasurably. I'm having a great time with Midnight's Children.