Thursday, January 14, 2010


So I just finished the book Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts. It was over 900 pages, which was awesome - per page, I was definitely getting my money's worth.

Overall, pretty compelling stuff. The main character was a heroin addict and armed robber who escaped prison in Australia to journey to Bombay. The book begins with the start of his time in Bombay, and covers his various adventures there as he opens a clinic in the slums and eventually gets involved with organized crime. Some of his similes and metaphors ("a silence so profound that the breeze against my ears was like a child's sleepy whisper" for example) made me grit my teeth, but the story and characters were enthralling. The main character's goodness of heart and devotion to helping others, despite the terrible things he'd done, were touching and inspiring.

Though it's a novel, it's pretty much based on the author's life. He actually did escape from prison and all that. This makes it more incredible. Would I like it just as much if some dude in the suburbs who'd never been to India had written it? No. But that dude probably wouldn't have written this book.

Should you read it? Yes, probably. I especially liked reading it while eating Indian food, for a more immersive sensory experience.

No comments:

Post a Comment