Sunday, June 09, 2024

Midnight's Children by Salman Rushdie

Finished: May 20 (almost all caught up in my reviews)

Wow! I have never read a Rushdie. Now I know why he is such a celebrated author. I loved this book, and I loved the sweeping history that is the backdrop to this story. 

Highly recommend. 

Here is what it is about:

The novel tells the story of Saleem Sinai, who was born at the exact moment when India gained its independence. As a result, he shares a shares a mystical connection with other children born at the same time, all of whom possess unique,  magical abilities. As Saleem grows up, his life mirrors the political and cultural changes happening in his country, from the partition of India and Pakistan, to the Bangladesh War of Independence. The story is a blend of historical fiction and magical realism, exploring themes of identity, fate, and the power of storytelling. (Goodreads).

This is a perfect summation!

Here is why James Mustich thinks it should be one of the 1000 Books You Read Before You Die:

Imagine a literary love child of Charles Dickens and The Arabian Nights, and you'll have some idea of the human interest and narrative ingenuity of Salman Rushdie's masterpiece, one of the most admire, acclaimed, and enjoyed novels of the second half of the twentieth century. Like Dickens Rushdie draws indelible characters and sets them in a swirling social context; he similarly shares a gift for exaggeration that gets closer to the truth about people than observational exactitude, illuminating his caricatures with a sense of justice and a sense of humor, often entwined. Like The Arabian Nights, Midnights Children leavens the world it depicts with magical capabilities and coincidences, thereby evoking the intense devotion our emotional lives demand of us, no matter our circumstances. Rushdie's unshakable belief in the regenrative power of telling stories, a faith given from in the unrelenting narrative energy of Midnight's Children is a legacy of both forebears. The force of Rushdie's prose is so propulsive, the currents of story-within-story so transporting, that each page is a futher winding of the crank on an enormous jack-in-the-box that explodes again and again with the wonders of living that hisory can never contain. 

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