©1995 Rohinton Mistry; (P)2001 Books on Tape, Inc.
"Mistry...needs no infusion of magic realism to vivify the real. The real world, through his eyes, is magical." (The New York Times)
This might be the most tragic, heart-wrenching, and yet one of the best books I've ever read. This book is grapes of wrath on steroids. For all the tragedy, this book will inspire you with its struggle and make you realize how important friendships and family are in your life. I disagree with those who were unhappy with the ending. It isn't the Count of Monte Cristo, and some of the more villainous characters never get what they've got coming to them, but I actually love how the author chose to leave things. If you know nothing of India and are interested, this is an interesting look into the politics and culture of that nation.
Started a bit slow but WOW! Sucks you in and drives home the point. You get to know interesting people and you care what happens to them. Well written and well narrated. A bit of a downer but a terrific story.
I Like scifi-fantasy,non-fiction, historical fiction genres. Liked Stormlight, Mistborn,GoT. Last read: Well of Ascension
I gave it 4 stars because Mr Mistry has kept it all real. So real that it saddens you in the end. I understand what the author was aiming at but an instant downfall of all protagonists was a little extreme. Before picking the book, I read reviews how depressing the end could be so I was anticipating a lot of things. But the way this story unfolds, you can foresee few things and that sends chills down your spine. India in itself during that decade had a very corrupted bureaucratic government, and if you introduce national emergency on it, hell breaks loose. I would still hear people justifying what Indira Gandhi was trying to achieve, they should definitely read this book.
Finally, 'A Fine Balance' is definitely not an apt name for this book. There is no sense of equilibrium here. The book is a great read and an interesting perspective from the people who suffer the most when governments go rogue. The people who swear to oath to protect its citizens has the capability to destroy lives with their single stroke of pen or words. I would definitely recommend this book but readers should anticipate the grim end.
This was a well written book. It offered a cultural reference to India and the caste system. It also offered an insight into the personal growth of the characters and how people act in the struggle for everyday survival.
Rohinton Mistry's portrait of Indian life was incredibly fascinating. I can't remember when I last felt so connected to a group of characters. John Lee's narration was pitch perfect. As wonderful as I am sure this book would be to read in print, I feel lucky that I made the choice to listen instead. It was truly a special read.
This is a classic- I couldn't stop listening. It is an amazing book. I wish there were more stars.
Yes, absolutely. I have felt cheated a number of times spending only one credit but, I am glad I took a chance on this one. As others have said, the book is a little slow to start but, as I got to know the characters, I began to feel that they were a part of my own family. I desperately wanted them to succeed but, just like real life, they often did not. It felt great when they did get a break. I can't forget the narrator John Lee. He was fantastic as always.
One would think that there would be some good coming out of all of the horrible struggles that these characters endure. I was so disappointed when I reached the end of the book. If you want to feel complete dispair at the end of a long "read", than do read this book!
Kind of a Schindler's list. This book haunts me. I hope it is not really that bad anywhere. Maybe it is. Maybe I'm naive, probably. We really have a wonderful life here in the USA.
I gave it a 5 because of how it demanded my attention and has kept my thoughts for many months. It is truly a story to ponder.
After reading The Kite Runner I really wanted a story that would give me that same insight into another culture. It's like traveling without leaving home!Although I would reccomend this book I must agree with other reviewers, be warned: it's not a happy ending. It is a good story with great characters, and engulfs you in India and the times and culture.
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