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  What Book Are You Currently Reading? (search mode)
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Author Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading?  (Read 336491 times)
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Not Great Bob
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« on: October 30, 2014, 08:30:03 am »

Claudius the God by Robert Graves. I feel like it should be right up my alley - politics, history, intrigue, I really enjoyed the BBC adaptation et cetera - but something about the prose just stops me from really getting into it.
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Not Great Bob
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« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2014, 07:40:56 am »

Midnight's Children by Salman Rushdie. After that I'll be working through a big stack of books that I accumulated as birthday presents recently.
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Not Great Bob
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Australia


« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2014, 04:00:14 am »
« Edited: December 29, 2014, 04:07:29 am by beatrice »

Midnight's Children by Salman Rushdie. After that I'll be working through a big stack of books that I accumulated as birthday presents recently.

What did you think? I'm a big Rushdie fan but that wasn't one of my favourites.

Loved it. It was my first of his books though, so I imagine that a lot of what I liked so much about it - the prose, the imaginativeness of the magic realism and how that integrated with the politics of the region - are general Rushdie, so maybe it would have been more disappointing had I come to it after reading his other works. What didn't you like about it?
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Not Great Bob
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Posts: 270
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« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2015, 04:07:08 am »

Midnight's Children by Salman Rushdie. After that I'll be working through a big stack of books that I accumulated as birthday presents recently.

What did you think? I'm a big Rushdie fan but that wasn't one of my favourites.

Loved it. It was my first of his books though, so I imagine that a lot of what I liked so much about it - the prose, the imaginativeness of the magic realism and how that integrated with the politics of the region - are general Rushdie, so maybe it would have been more disappointing had I come to it after reading his other works. What didn't you like about it?

Oh, don't get me wrong, I don't dislike it. But I didn't find the characters as emotionally engaging as in some of his other books. And the political theme was also a little more abstract to me, not as focused as I might have liked. Both Shame and Satanic Verses are in many ways similar but I enjoyed them more. And if you want to feel like a child and cry Haroun and the Sea of Stories is hard to beat!

With more hindsight, I see where you're coming from. I really engaged with the characters in Saleem's family, but I found the Midnight's Children - particularly Shiva (and to a lesser extent Parvati-the-Witch, though I guess she doesn't play as significant a role in the story) to be a bit underdeveloped. I felt for all the build up about Shiva as Saleem's double/antithesis, his character wasn't as vivid as some of the more peripheral characters so I found that a bit of a let down. It also meant that the political symbolism didn't quite come together as much as I expected it to. I still thought it was great, though.

I did like a lot of Rushdie's characterisation though, so if it's better in Shame and the Satanic Verses I'm really eager to read them! Haroun and the Sea of Stories looks really sweet. I haven't read a kid's book in so long, so I feel like it'd be a nice change.
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Not Great Bob
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Posts: 270
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« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2015, 04:11:52 am »
« Edited: January 08, 2015, 04:16:01 am by beatrice »

Anyway, I'm reading The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark. Very witty, very sharp prose and very recognisable too - I had a few Jean Brodieish teachers (though they weren't actually fascists, thank God).
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